£113 million contribution to the Perth and Kinross economy

Perth College UHI contributes £113 million and supports 1,250 jobs throughout Perth and Kinross according to a new report.

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Perth College UHI campus overlooking Perth

The independent economic impact assessment report was commissioned to assess the economic impact of Perth College UHI in 2019.

It was carried out by Biggar Economics to evaluate the national and regional contribution made by the University of the Highlands and Islands and academic partners as it approaches its tenth anniversary. Perth College UHI became part of the University in 2010.

It found the university partnership contributes £653 million to the Scottish economy each year and supports 7,200 jobs. The assessment shows that for every £1 spent on the university, the university partnership puts £5 back into the Scottish economy. The findings also reveal that the partnership’s impact across Scotland has grown by between 20% and 25% since it was last measured in 2010, mainly due to an increase in staff and graduates.

In 2019, Perth College UHI had 530 members of staff, 8,400 student enrolments across its further and higher education courses (of which 3,757 are full-time) and an annual income of £28 million.

The authors highlighted that the College’s value goes beyond its financial contribution, explaining: “The College is a significant part of the community’s fabric and supports essential services and businesses - creating benefits for the communities it serves.”

Dr Margaret Cook, Principal said: “This report shows that Perth College UHI plays a very important role within our community – and beyond. As well as providing educational opportunities, we can demonstrate our additional impact in creating local employment opportunities, supporting local businesses, and attracting new businesses to invest in the area.”

Welcoming the findings, Professor Crichton Lang, University of the Highlands and Islands Principal and Vice-Chancellor (Interim), said: “We commissioned these reports to measure the contribution our university partnership makes to the regional and national economy. It shows that investment in our partnership has a clear benefit and, in these uncertain economic times, it’s important to understand this benefit and highlight the value the university partnership brings to the communities we serve.

“As a flourishing university for the Highlands and Islands, Moray and Perthshire we aim to retain, attract and nurture talent in our region to reverse population decline and build innovation and socio-economic prosperity. This mission is particularly important as we work to support the recovery of our region following the COVID-19 pandemic. The nature of employment will change and we are working with employers, communities and learners to respond to their needs.”

The Perth College UHI curriculum offering for students aims to meet the needs and expectations of a diverse and geographically dispersed student body. It has a central role in skilling and reskilling people in the local labour market throughout their careers. Its offer ranges from employability skills, core skills, transferable skills to high level technical skills and delivers courses in several overseas markets including China.

You can view the Perth College UHI Economic Impact Assessment here.