Economic Impact

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    CSUN Economic and Social Impact Study

Introductory Overview

California State University, Northridge (CSUN) is one of California’s leading universities and home to the third-largest student body in the state. Enrollment levels have exceeded 40,000. This level of demand not only speaks to the reputation and appeal of CSUN but also indicates a strong recognition that a college education is one of the most valuable investments individuals can make in themselves and their economic and social well-being. It is, in fact, one of the most important factors in attaining higher wage employment and in securing a high quality of life in today’s California.

As CSUN puts another academic school year on the books, the importance and scope of the economic and social impacts that the University has on its students, neighborhood, region, and on California are clear. This analysis examines and illustrates those impacts and in the process demonstrates the overwhelming importance of higher education to Californians, and to all Americans.

University Profile

With a total enrollment exceeding 40,000, CSUN has the largest student body of all 23 campuses in the California State University system and one of the largest in the nation. Overall, in terms of enrollment, it is the third-largest university in the state, behind only UCLA and USC. The university also boasts a rapidly growing network of more than 300,000 alumni.

As of fall 2014, CSUN employed more than 2,000 faculty members, of which 44.4% are full-time and nearly 40% are tenured or on a tenure track.

CSUN offers a wide variety of undergraduate and graduate programs across 70 different degree fields. In addition, CSUN offers three doctoral programs. The University is also well known for its credential programs, offering 26 distinct programs spanning a wide range of disciplines from education to health services. The distribution of students by undergraduate degree program is relatively wide, with the largest major category of currently enrolled students in health-related disciplines, followed closely by business and economics and communications.

Table 1: Student Breakdown (Fall 2014)
Student Level Number of Students Share of Total Students (%)
Undergraduate 35,206 88.1
Post-Baccalaureate 613 1.5
Master's 3,612 9.0
Credential 552 1.4
Total 39,983 100

Figure 1: Undergraduate Enrollment by Degree Program (Fall 2015)

Figure 2: Graduate Enrollment by Degree Program (Fall 2015)