Skip to Main Content

Report: UMass Lowell Delivered $812M in Positive Impact

University is a 'Key Economic Driver… Affecting Every Person in the State’

UMass Lowell Image
The growth of both UMass Lowell and the system's positive economic impact was driven over the last three fiscal years by construction projects, such as UMass Lowell's University Suites, shown here.


Contacts for media: Christine Gillette, 978-934-2209 or and Nancy Cicco, 978-934-4944 or

LOWELL, Mass. – UMass Lowell’s positive economic impact on the region added up to more than $812 million last year, supporting thousands of jobs and businesses, according to a report released today by the UMass Donahue Institute.

UMass Lowell increased its positive impact by $322 million, or 66 percent, in just three years, up from $490 million in Fiscal Year 2010, according to the Donahue Institute report, which found that the University of Massachusetts system pumped $6.1 billion into the Commonwealth’s economy in Fiscal Year 2013, up 25 percent since FY 2010.

“UMass Lowell is a key economic driver in the Commonwealth, directly or indirectly affecting every person in the state,” the Donahue Institute report states, adding that UMass Lowell’s contributions to the economy from major construction projects and spending by faculty, staff and students “generates significant benefits for the Massachusetts economy.”

Statewide, the UMass system supports more than 45,000 on- and off-campus jobs. Locally, UMass Lowell supports more than 6,200 jobs, 70 percent of which are off-campus. The city’s second-largest employer, UMass Lowell employs approximately 1,400 full-time faculty and staff, more than 560 of whom live in Lowell.

The growth of both UMass Lowell and the system’s positive economic impact was driven over the last three fiscal years by construction projects. Since 2009, UMass Lowell has opened eight new buildings. Those include extensive renovations of the Tsongas Center at UMass Lowell (formerly the Tsongas Arena) and the UMass Lowell Inn & Conference Center (formerly the DoubleTree Hotel). The other construction projects include six brand-new buildings completed between August 2012 and August 2013 that include the Mark and Elisia Saab Emerging Technologies and Innovation Center, the Health and Social Sciences Building, University Suites, Riverview Suites and two parking garages. In just a few months, UMass Lowell will also complete the new, $95 million student center at University Crossing.

The construction projects at UMass Lowell have supported more than 1,800 jobs and those that have been completed continue to play an important role in contributing to the university’s competitive position in attracting students, employees and researchers, helping to sustain a positive impact on the local economy.

The UMass system conducts a total of about $600 million in sponsored research annually, which also offers a positive impact through supporting not only the economy but also scientific discovery and breakthroughs that save lives, solve problems and propel regional employers forward. UMass Lowell’s research expenditures topped $66 million in FY 2013, up from $37 million in 2007.

Programs like the Massachusetts Medical Device Development Center, a joint initiative of UMass Lowell and UMass Worcester, help entrepreneurs and startup companies get off the ground by providing expert assistance and facilities for research and development of new products and services.

The Donahue Institute report also found that the state’s total investment of $519 million in Fiscal Year 2013 equated to $12 in economic output for every $1 of state funding the UMass system received. The Commonwealth provided UMass Lowell with $79 million last year, which the campus in turn used to create a tenfold return on investment.

“This report shows how effective the University of Massachusetts, and particularly UMass Lowell, are in leveraging the Commonwealth’s investment to benefit residents and businesses statewide,” said UMass Lowell Chancellor Marty Meehan. “That benefit is not only in the form of direct financial impact, but also in producing an educated workforce that stays in Massachusetts.”

The UMass system produces more than 16,000 graduates with bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees annually; this year alone, UMass Lowell graduated more than 3,400 people and the campus has seen a 77 percent increase in graduates since 2008, breaking its own records at the last seven Commencements for the numbers receiving degrees.

Eighty-nine percent of UMass Lowell undergraduates and 61 percent of graduate students are Massachusetts residents. Of UMass Lowell’s 80,283 living alumni, 49,733 live in the Commonwealth, the second-highest total of all five UMass campuses. Eighty-five percent of UMass graduates stay in Massachusetts up to five years after graduating and 65 percent stay longer.

UMass Lowell alumni earn among the top mid-career and starting salaries among counterparts at all New England public institutions and UMass Lowell delivers among the best returns on investment of all public colleges and universities in the nation, according to

UMass Lowell is a national research university located on a high-energy campus in the heart of a global community. The university offers its 17,000 students bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in business, education, engineering, fine arts, health, humanities, sciences and social sciences. UMass Lowell delivers high-quality educational programs, vigorous hands-on learning and personal attention from leading faculty and staff, all of which prepare graduates to be ready for work, for life and for all the world offers.

Economic Contribution Analysis