graduate students show value of local ballet group
A study by two Shippensburg University graduate students
shows that the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet (CPYB) had an economic impact
of nearly $5.7 million on the region.
The study was done by Chris Sheipe and Joey Reese, students
in the university’s master’s of science degree program in psychological science.
The pair is in the program’s applied track for graduates interested in areas such as industry, government,
or non-profits. The study fulfills part of their degree requirements.
According to Dr. Lea Adams, associate professor of
psychology and co-director of the applied track with Dr. James Griffith, associate
professor of psychology, the study focused on the fundamental question “Was
money spent in the community that would not have been spent if (CPYB) didn’t
Of the $5.7 million impact, Sheipe and Reese found individuals
who attended performances spent nearly $2.6 million, CPYB’s operational expenditures
were nearly $1.6 million, and CPYB’s salary and wages were nearly $1.4 million.
Reese said the study looked at three areas of spending. “The
biggest one was the clientele spending in the community. The second group was
the expenditures in operating costs itself. For example, the money paid to local
contractors to build a set. The third area of spending was the salaries and
wages of employees at CPYB.”
In the study, individuals who attended performances were asked
various questions such as how far they traveled, did they eat dinner in the
area, did they stay overnight and what else did they do while they were in the
According to Reese, “In a time when arts are being pushed
away, this really means something. I like the methodology that we use in
psychology. It’s very scientific and I think when you apply it to the real
world, you get real results that actually mean something. For Central
Pennsylvania Youth Ballet (the results) are valuable.”
Adams said the program regularly works with area
organizations. “We try to partner with organizations in our community to do
applied psychological research and CPYB has been a magnificent community