BY MIKE TURCOTTE
Larry Smith, adjunct associate professor of economics from the University of Waterloo, discussed a report about the economical impact that Conestoga College has had on Waterloo Region and outlaying areas at a presentation in the rec centre Sept. 28.
According to the full report, titled Conestoga: Adapting for Prosperity II, a 2016 Update, which was prepared by Smith, almost 65 per cent of Conestoga’s graduates from its regular programs live in the local area, defined as Waterloo Region, Guelph and Stratford.
“These 73,874 graduates equal 13.7 per cent of the local adult population. Together Conestoga’s graduates and continuing education and corporate training students represent at least 45 per cent of local resident employment.”
When looking at the money side of things, the report states, “The annual employment income of local Conestoga graduates is at least $2.3 billion, and therefore the economic contribution to their employers and to the community is much more than $2.3 billion.”
According to the report, when discussing the broader spectrum and looking at the impact on the Ontario economy, including the local area, there are 110,113 Conestoga graduates living in Ontario, with over 80,000 of them working, adding over $3.4 billion to the Ontario economy.
Conestoga is an absolute powerhouse, fuelling the economy and providing many employees as well as business owners. The report states that 5,231 business owners are from Conestoga.
Smith also said in his report, “Conestoga makes a major and indispensable contribution to the adaptability of the local economy and to the community’s intangible well-being. Simply put, it is the primary adult educator in the local area. Conestoga has such an extensive effect because of both its scale and diversity of activity.”
Smith showed a video that explained many of the findings of his report, that was done in the style of the Game of Thrones’ opening video, but related to the college.
Smith said, “I am so very proud of all of you, and all of your efforts.”
The video can be found at https://youtu.be/0eDtM12BbV8
To read the report, go to www.conestogac.on.ca/about/reports/