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Centers of Academic Excellence (CAE) Impact Study

NCyTE commissioned a CAE impact study using NSF grant funds, which was started by Applied Research Northwest (ARNW), but transferred to and completed by Seattle Jobs Initiative (SJI), a Seattle-based workforce research organization, in 2021. The original study focused on such issues as enrollments, faculty retention, the attraction of federal grants, and economic impact on the region. In addition to further analysis of data provided by ARNW, SJI conducted two case studies of CAE-designated colleges: WCC in Bellingham, WA, and Jackson State Community College in Jackson, TN. The study estimated that across WCC student, graduate, and operations spending between 2012 and 2019, CAE designation has contributed toward a cumulated $16.3 million in earnings and 948 new jobs in the region surrounding the college. The completed research study has been printed for dissemination and is available for download via the PDF link below.