Students in the Hasan School of Business recently conducted an economic impact study regarding university athletics and its impact in Pueblo County. According to the study, Pack sports teams are delivering outstanding results on and off the field this year.
The study reported that the spending habits of coaching personnel, non-local student athletes and out-of-town spectators now supports more than 59 jobs and generates $5.24 million a year in economic activity.
When CSU-Pueblo President Lesley Di Mare announced the three-year, $25 million On the Move campaign last year, the potential benefits reached no further than the university, but with the increase in visitors because of NCAA matchups, even local businesses have been pleasantly surprised.
“We have seen an increase in our stores since school started back up, especially on the weekends,” said the manager of a local diner near campus. “It helps that the new business revolves around collegiate athletes and their mentors as well, they are very polite and fun to work with.”
Students and staff involved in the study said the figures would be even higher if the study had also concentrated on the increase of students who chose to attend CSU-Pueblo as a result of the added sports programs and their popularity.
The number of jobs created would also have increased if game-day staffing such as concessions and other employment were included as well.
The study shows that sports can have a definite impact on the economy of the community they represent.
CSU-Pueblo Athletic Director Joe Folda told the Pueblo Chieftain, “One of our primary emphasis in our athletic program is to ensure that we are a positive impact on the university and the community. One of the ways is financial. That’s what we try to do. We hope we’re a positive.”