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News Release

UC San Diego Contributes $7.2 Billion to California Economy

Econ News
This chart shows technology companies started by former Jacobs School faculty and alumni, such as Qualcomm and Cymer, Inc., have played a role in UC San Diego's huge economic impact to the state.

San Diego, CA, Oct. 1, 2008 -- Jacobs School of Engineering faculty and alumni have played an important role in UC San Diego's multibillion-dollar contribution to the California economy. According to an independent economic analysis released this week, UC San Diego contributes more than $7.2 billion in direct and indirect spending and personal income each year to the state economy and generates 39,000 jobs.

Companies started by UC San Diego faculty and alumni create an even more powerful impact. The total statewide economic contribution from UC San Diego start-up companies is more than $37 billion annually and nearly 130,000 jobs. In San Diego County, these start-ups add approximately $32 billion in direct and indirect spending and personal income to the economy. These companies create nearly 115,000 jobs, the report found.

“UC San Diego changes the lives of San Diegans and Californians every day, through job creation, advanced patient care, disease and drug therapies, service in the local community, and world-renowned research and education,” said UC San Diego Chancellor Marye Anne Fox. “This report demonstrates in hard numbers the powerful benefits created by our campus—billions of dollars injected into the economy and tens of thousands of jobs created. When combined with our leading-edge research and education, this latest analysis clearly shows UC San Diego’s local impact, national influence and global reach.”

In San Diego County alone, the university’s annual contribution to the economy is $5.7 billion in direct and indirect spending and personal income; UC San Diego generates more than 33,600 jobs locally.

The study was conducted by CBRE Consulting, Inc. of San Francisco, which examined UC San Diego’s academic programs, alumni, faculty, research, employment, spending, students and visitors for fiscal year 2006-07 to create an overall picture of the university’s economic impact.

“This report confirms UC San Diego plays a vital role in boosting our local economy, expanding our skilled workforce and driving the technological future of San Diego,” said San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders. “UC San Diego is an outstanding feature of our community’s economic landscape.”

An Economic Engine
UC San Diego, the third largest employer in San Diego County, pays more than $1.1 billion in salaries and wages to nearly 27,000 faculty, staff, healthcare and student workers. In total salaries and wages, purchasing of goods and services, and construction, UC San Diego spent nearly $2.5 billion in FY 2006-07, of which $1.7 billion was spent in San Diego County. Every $1 in direct UC San Diego spending generates an additional 92 cents in indirect spending in the county, according to the study.

“I’ve been an employee of UC San Diego for 16 years and my sister has been with the Medical Center for nearly 30 years,” said Carol Hobson, an alumnus and assistant director of Regional Development for the university. “I know first-hand the type of impact, economic and otherwise, that the university can have. The benefits and personal growth opportunities have been tremendous.”
Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego, the world’s oldest and largest center for ocean and earth science research, graduate training and public service, currently operates over 300 research programs in 65 countries on every continent, in every ocean worldwide. Sponsored research spending for fiscal year 2006-07 was $102 million.

The Ripple Effect
UC San Diego’s robust economic impact isn’t limited to its spending on research, dedication to students, purchasing and payroll. Faculty and alumni of UC San Diego have started 67 currently active companies in California that generate more than $10 billion in annual sales, of which $8.8 billion comes from Qualcomm, Inc., founded in San Diego by former UC San Diego professor Irwin Jacobs.

“UC San Diego has a very positive impact on local businesses. Our region’s diversified, highly technological economy owes much of its success to the influence of this advanced 21st century research institution in our midst,” said Bob Akins, UC San Diego alumnus and co-founder of San Diego-based Cymer, Inc., the world’s leading supplier of excimer light sources. “The highly skilled graduates of UC San Diego are one of the university’s most significant contributions to the economy.”

Benefits Beyond Dollars
UC San Diego’s impact can be measured in more than dollars. In health sciences, UC San Diego researchers and graduates have developed advancements in patient care, breakthrough cures, and training and education. UC San Diego Medical Center admits more than 21,000 inpatients and serves 476,000 outpatients per year. But it’s the quality of care that distinguishes the university.

“The caring and professionalism of the doctors and nurses at UC San Diego Medical Center surpassed my family’s expectations when they treated my newborn son in the neonatal intensive care unit,” said Solana Beach resident Alexis Conerty. “The combination of advanced medical technology and personalized care has touched our lives. Thanks to UC San Diego, my little one is a healthy, active toddler.”

Media Contacts:
Jim Gogek, 858-822-3736
Rex Graham, 858-534-5952

Media Contacts

Daniel Kane
Jacobs School of Engineering