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ESU: Educational Asset for Pennsylvania and Economic Engine for Monroe County

From its humble beginnings as a Normal School in 1893 to its position in 2008 as a comprehensive university, East Stroudsburg University has become a major economic engine in Monroe County.

East Stroudsburg University is currently the ninth largest employer in Monroe County, providing 750 jobs directly and creating a total employment impact of 1,206 jobs. The university generates more than $273.5 million annually in direct and indirect business stimulus, including $109.9 million per year in Monroe County alone. This encompasses the impact of spending by the institution, faculty, staff, students and visitors. The Commonwealth also receives $2.66 million per year from state sales tax generated by ESUemployee and student spending and state income tax generated by employee salaries.

A drawing of a potential building with sidewalks and shrubbery nearby

Rendering of the 51,000 sq. ft., $11 million dollar Computer Security Research Center/Class A Office building to be constructed in East Stroudsburg.

Academically, ESU has evolved into dynamic university offering 68 undergraduate and 21 graduate degree programs to more than 7,000 students. With over 300 teaching faculty committed to academic excellence, ESU has earned its reputation as a student centered university.

East Stroudsburg University’s contributions to regional economic development efforts are noteworthy. The university has been identified as a “best practice” model in community and economic development regionally and by the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE). The success of the university’s Business Accelerator Program has led to the creation of nine high tech companies, over 83 new jobs, and to the development of the ESU Research and Technology Park on 11 acres of university-owned property. The Research and Technology Park will be managed by the ESU Center for Research and Economic Development (CFRED). CFRED is focusing on attracting companies and educational opportunities in the areas of homeland security, financial services, biotechnology/life sciences, information technology, healthcare, and advanced manufacturing. Economic impact projections of Phase 1 of the project include the construction of a 51,000 sq. ft., $11million dollar Computer Security Research Center/Class A Office building; over 254 new jobs, average wages of $47,857 and $42.3 million into the Monroe County economy.

ESU is one of the 14 institutions in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE). Economic development efforts across PASSHEinstitutions have not gone unnoticed. In FY 07-08, PASSHE received its first legislative appropriation totaling $1.878 million to support economic development initiatives across the Commonwealth. ESU was awarded one of three PASSHE appropriations to create an Entrepreneurial Leadership Center on campus.

In the area of sponsored projects and research, ESU secured over $14 million in grant funded revenue from 2002-2007; and in the area of workforce development more than $700,000 was awarded in employee-training grants involving 45 businesses and supporting training for hundreds of employees.

Each year, East Stroudsburg University produces skilled and successful graduates. As of fall 2006, the University had more than 35,000 alumni, about 20,860 of whom live in Pennsylvania and contribute to the vitality of its communities and economy.

East Stroudsburg University is an economic engine for Monroe County. It is well-positioned as a major center for Innovation and Science and Technology in northeastern Pennsylvania. The University’s new $40 million dollar Science and Technology Center, opening fall semester 2008 will be a major attraction in bringing innovative business and education collaborations to the region. Additionally, ESU is strategically located 75 miles west of New York City and 85 miles northeast of Philadelphia, placing it in close proximity to the nation’s top global pharmaceutical and financial services companies.

The university is also located in the nine-county Workforce Innovation in Regional Economic Development (WIRED) Wall Street West Region and is actively engaged in the Pocono Mountains Keystone Innovation Zone (PMKIZ). These initiatives, supported by the creation of the University’s new College of Business, Management and Economics, provide a strong foundation for ESU to expand its regional alliances and academic and economic opportunities enabling the university to better prepare its students to serve, lead and succeed in a global community. For more information about East Stroudsburg University, visit

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