With a growing international reputation for hospitality & tourism, historic preservation, educational excellence, scientific research, business growth, and an unmatched lifestyle – Charleston would not be the same community without the long-term presence and unique contributions of our public and private higher education institutions.

Higher education improves the quality of life for our citizens, raises average salaries, and contributes to the global economic competitiveness of the Charleston region.

Higher Education's


$4.5 billion

in total economic impact


regional workforce

$2.2 billion

in labor income

Charleston's colleges and Universities

The four publicly-supported higher institutions and Charleston Southern University make a substantial economic contribution to the Charleston region, accounting for approximately 10% of Charleston region's $28 Billion GDP. They directly employ nearly 17,000 faculty, staff and medical professionals who teach approximately 36,600 students, and provide healthcare services to thousands of residents. If these five schools were a single entity, they would be the second largest employer in the region.

Public Colleges

Largest Accredited, Independent Private University

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