One of the most effective ways a college can tackle deprivation is to demonstrate the contribution the college is already making to the lives of individuals and the community. Quite simply, if a college can show those in difficult circumstances how the training it provides can benefit them, there is a far greater chance that they will begin to see college as a real option.
At East Berkshire College, this is a major issue, with a significant number of the College’s 9,000 students living in areas of considerable deprivation in Slough and West London.
For Kate Webb, the College’s Principal, tackling deprivation is not just a side issue, but an essential part of the College’s core mission. One of the many ways she has attempted to achieve this is by commissioning EMSI to produce an Economic Impact Study. Although stressing that economic impact is only a part of the value the College delivers, nevertheless Kate sees quantifying the economic impact of the College as a “great way of helping us measure the impact we have on people’s lives.”
Unlike many impact studies, EMSI’s research includes both impact analysis and investment analysis. This allows us to calculate not only the benefits the College brings to the local business community, but also the benefits it brings to society, taxpayers and learners. For a college like East Berkshire, looking to impact on the lives of those who might plausibly end up as NEETs (Not in Education, Employment or Training), this is particularly important. Quantifying the benefits a college can give learners adds massive weight to its mission to reach people in areas of high deprivation.
So how much do learners benefit from training at East Berkshire College? According to our results:
- Every £1 that learners pay for their education at East Berkshire College yields £3.20 in higher future wages.
- This translates to an 11.7% annual return on their investment.
In addition to these impressive results for the individual, we also found that the College brings major collective benefits, with society as a whole receiving an annual return on investment equating to 7.7%.
The staff at East Berkshire College have no doubt always known that they have a significant impact on the lives of individuals and the local community. With the results of their Economic Impact Study they now have the evidence to prove it. Learners and the local community alike can now see just how much the College matters. According to Kate, so too can Ofsted: “We used our Economic Impact Study to help evidence our contribution to the local community. As an independent assessment it added weight to the evidence of the College’s positive impact on the lives of learners and their families.”
East Berkshire College is more than just a training provider — it is in the business of transforming lives. Our Economic Impact Study demonstrates to all that it is performing this role with great success.
For further details of how our Economic Impact Studies can help you measure the economic impact of your college, contact Andy Durman on firstname.lastname@example.org