Conestoga news

March 5, 2012 9:57 AM

New Report Assesses Conestoga's Impact on Regional Prosperity

According to a new study conducted by economist Larry Smith, adjunct associate professor of economics at the University of Waterloo and president of Essential Economics Corporation, Conestoga College “is indispensable to local prosperity and the health and competitiveness of the labour force.”

The report, Conestoga: Adapting for Prosperity, provides an update of a 2002 study also conducted by Smith. It examines the impact of the institution on the local community and its economy, and evaluates recent growth in terms of meeting the region’s increasing need for a highly skilled labour force.

Smith presented his findings today at a luncheon event for business and community leaders.

Some of the highlights include:

  • Almost 50 per cent of the local adult population has participated in education or training programs at Conestoga.
  • The total number of graduates has increased by 52 per cent since 2002; 65 per cent of graduates remain in the local community, contributing to regional prosperity and the well-being of our community.
  • Since 1990, continuing education at Conestoga has helped almost 200,000 individuals build their careers or explore personal interests.
  • Conestoga graduates contribute more than $1 billion to the local economy each year.
  • Although Conestoga is Ontario’s fastest growing college, with a growth rate of 42 per cent between 2005/6 and 2010/11, further expansion is required for the College to meet the needs of the local economy.

  For Conestoga president John Tibbits, the results clearly show the importance of polytechnic education in the community: “As the economic needs of the area continue to grow and diversify, it is essential that individuals, employers and local industries have access to the effective education, training and applied research programs that lead to successful careers, strong businesses and regional prosperity.”

The full report is available at

For more information:
Brenda Cassidy
519-748-5220 ext 3336