George Mason University has been recognized as one of the largest employers in the Washington, D.C. region, according to the Washington Business Journal.
Mason is the 28th-largest employer of National Capital Region residents, and the 13th-largest employer in Northern Virginia.
Mason has 6,769 employees from the metropolitan area, up from 6,461 the previous year, the publication says, and 6,777 total employees. The list did not include federal workplaces.
Mason’s more than 100,000 graduates in the Washington, D.C., area populate many of the area’s largest employers on the WBJ list, including local school systems, Booz Allen Hamilton, Inova Health System and many others.
“Mason continues to grow and is a major contributor to regional economic activity by supporting jobs and creating business opportunities for hundreds of area companies who provide the university with goods and services,” said Terry Clower, director of the Mason-based Center for Regional Analysis. “More importantly, Mason is driving our region’s economic competitiveness by providing local employers with skilled workers and as a growing source of innovation and technology through our research and expanding engagement with the business community.”
The University of Maryland (9th), Georgetown University (25th), George Washington University (29th), and American University (41st) are also among the largest employers of D.C.-area residents.
The WBJ ranking is the latest to cite Mason as an employer. Last spring Forbes named Mason as one of “America’s Best Employers,” ranking the university 54th among 500 top midsize companies.
Mason’s number of employees, and the career-ready workforce that the university produces, are only two indicators of Mason’s economic footprint on the region. The university also drives innovation through research and development, brings together complementary partners in business and government, works with area employers to design degree programs, provides continuing education and attracts talent and business to the area.
In addition, Mason develops an entrepreneurship and innovation ecosystem, assisting in the establishment and growth of companies through the Mason Small Business Development Center by offering advising, training and networking opportunities.
A 2013 study by the Center for Regional Analysis found that the university’s total economic impact on Northern Virginia in fiscal year 2012 was $1.14 billion and that its presence supported 11,618 full-time equivalent jobs in the region. The university’s cumulative impact on the Virginia economy that year was an estimated $1.56 billion and 16,023 jobs, the study found.
Mason’s economic impact continues to grow—Mason has accounted for 48 percent of Virginia public university enrollment growth over the last decade.