Birmingham-Southern College generates $97.2M for Alabama, independent study finds

(Birmingham-Southern College)
(Birmingham-Southern College)

As Birmingham-Southern College continues to seek one-time bridge funding from the State of Alabama, Jefferson County and the City of Birmingham, an independent study has found that the college generates a direct economic impact of $97.2 million in Alabama each year—$70.5 million of that centered in Jefferson County.

Keep reading to learn more about the study and the economic benefits of Birmingham-Southern College.

The Case for Birmingham-Southern College

(Birmingham-Southern College)
(Birmingham-Southern College)

In December 2022, Birmingham-Southern College released a Statement Regarding the College’s Future detailing the financial struggles facing the college. Despite the remarkable strides taken by recent college presidents—notably General Charles Krulak (2011-2015) and Daniel Coleman (2018-present)—the college will not be able to continue operations without help.

Over the past year, President Daniel Coleman has worked diligently to secure $45M in firm commitments towards a goal of refreshing the college’s endowment. In order to have breathing room to continue operations, Birmingham-Southern College is asking for a one-time contribution from the State of Alabama ($30M), the City of Birmingham ($5M) and Jefferson County ($2.5M).

Note: Public funding is regularly used for private colleges—for instance, the State of Alabama’s 2023 Education Trust Fund Budget includes $13,151,435 for Tuskegee University and $1,054,175 for Talladega College, while Senator Richard Shelby recently secured $35M in federal funding for Spring Hill College, a private Catholic college in Mobile. 

Economic Impact of Birmingham-Southern College

Birmingham-Southern College
(Birmingham-Southern College)

Economic Impact of Birmingham-Southern College on Alabama and Jefferson County Economy—a recent study conducted by M. Keivan Deravi, Ph.D. of Economic Research Services, Inc.—has found Birmingham-Southern College has a direct economic impact of $97.2 million each year on the State of Alabama’s economy. A massive portion of that total—$70.5 million—is in Jefferson County.

The study reveals that the amount BSC is seeking in public funding is only about 12% of its annual economic impact on the state and less than 40% of its direct annual economic impact in 2022—and for every year in the foreseeable future.

In other words, BSC is projected to have a direct economic impact of at least $972 million over the next decade, while asking governments to invest less than 4% of that amount in one-time funding.

“Dr. Deravi’s study validates the fact that a $37.5 million investment by the public sector can return nearly a billion dollars in direct impact over the next ten years to our state’s economy. That’s a great deal for city, county and state taxpayers.”

Daniel Coleman, President, Birmingham-Southern College
Birmingham-Southern College
(Birmingham-Southern College)

Birmingham-Southern College’s fiscal impact was pegged at more than $20 million annually, including $6.8 million in State taxes and another $7 million in local taxes. These estimates do not include taxes realized from the income of BSC graduates, many of whom stay in Alabama after graduation.

“I have been involved in many groups, clubs and organizations. Aside for my church, Birmingham-Southern College is the most positive and encouraging one of all. Its faculty, staff and student body lead people to do their best and be their best. Everyone inspires everyone else. The diversity stimulates understanding and the ability to relate to others. Servant leadership is a hallmark of the BSC experience, and the alumni live it out in their work and their communities.”

Dr. Kevin J. Alexander, D.M.D, P.C., Birmingham-Southern College graduate

How you can support Birmingham-Southern College

(Birmingham-Southern College)
(Birmingham-Southern College)

The best way to support Birmingham-Southern College is to contact your representatives and make your voice heard. For tips on what to say to your representatives, visit Birmingham-Southern’s BSC Forward page

Contact Alabama Governor Kay Ivey

Contact Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin

  • Determine your representatives in the Alabama House and Senate here.  
  • Determine your Jefferson County Commissioner here.  
  • Determine your Birmingham City Councilor here.

To support the college financially, you can make a new gift to the Birmingham-Southern College Foundation or renew your pledge to the Birmingham-Southern College Foundation.

Attend BSC Forward – Letter-Writing Party on Friday, Feb. 17

Birmingham-Southern College
(Birmingham-Southern College)

As part of the ongoing community effort to save Birmingham-Southern College, Laney DeJonge (Class of 1991) and Glenny Brock (Class of 1999) are hosting a letter-writing party open to everyone fighting for the future of BSC.

Stationery paper, envelopes, postcards, postage and a printing station will be provided. Plus, there will be free chips & salsa!

Forward Ever!

Share your thoughts on Birmingham-Southern College by tagging us @bhamnow!

Nathan Watson
Nathan Watson

Senior Content Producer + Photographer

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