Why UMass Amherst Matters
As the leading public research University for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, UMass Amherst improves the quality of life for all of its citizens.
UMass Amherst serves its students, parents, alumni, and the public, while providing an engine of economic development for the Commonwealth through the work of our faculty.
UMass Amherst serves its public broadly, and requires broad public support.
Educating the Next Generation
Attaining an education has never been more critical for success, and, as a five year trend demonstrates, more and more students from the Commonwealth are applying to UMass Amherst to pursue their degree.
Last year, UMass Amherst received the most applications in the history of the campus. The resulting Class of 2012 is the most academically competitive first-year class in history, with the highest SAT scores and the highest grade point average. It is also the most diverse class in the recent past, consisting of 22% minority students.
But, with state funding for the campus cut over the years, the burden of paying for a University education has shifted to our families, and increasingly, the reality of attaining a degree is slipping away from our students.
Improving the World
As the public research University of the Commonwealth, our faculty conduct research in every discipline, creating new knowledge to solve problems and improve our quality of life.
With current concerns focused on the economy and the environment, Robert Pollin, UMass Amherst professor of economics and co-director of the Political Economy Research Institute (PERI) offers solutions in Green Recovery: A Program to Create Good Jobs and Start Building a Low-Carbon Economy.
Researching with colleagues, Dr. Pollin demonstrates that a short-term $100 billion green economic recovery package would:
- Create nearly four times more total jobs than spending the same amount of money within the oil industry, and 300,000 more jobs than a similar amount of spending directed toward household consumption.
- Create roughly triple the number of good jobs — paying at least $16 dollars an hour — as spending the same amount of money within the oil industry.
- Reduce the unemployment rate to 4.4 percent from 5.7 percent (calculated within the framework of U.S. labor market conditions in July 2008).
- Bolster employment especially in construction and manufacturing. Construction employment has fallen from 8 million to 7.2 million jobs over the past two years due to the housing bubble collapse. The Green Recovery program can, at the least, bring back these lost 800,000 construction jobs.
In October 2008, Dr. Pollin gave testimony in Washington to the House Committee on Education and Labor Hearing on “Building an Economic Recovery Package: Creating and Preserving Jobs in America.”
This research will contribute to a new national economy, with environmental implications for the world.
Maintaining the Momentum
Massachusetts has a long tradition of competitiveness, innovation and social responsibility.
At UMass Amherst, students in the Class of 2012 are pursuing a University degree, taught by Dr. Pollin, and hundreds of other gifted faculty members. Together, they present an opportunity for a new generation defined by competitiveness, innovation and social responsibility,
That’s why UMass Amherst matters – and why it has never been more important to invest in the public research University of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.