This year, the public mission of the University of Michigan has been a beacon amid a sea of uncertainty. While our campuses look different, with many fewer in-person classes and activities, U-M continues to embrace our commitment to excellence for the public good.
Our public focus has ensured that we are making a difference for millions of people, and it has guided our work to serve our communities and the world through education, research, service and patient care.
This edition of Michigan Impact demonstrates how we are delivering on our responsibility to the public we serve, whether we are testing a vaccine, supporting businesses in our state, or combating racism.
Our researchers have stepped up quickly, as well. In the first six months of the pandemic, U-M researchers submitted more than 800 proposals to pursue COVID-related research, launched more than 320 COVID-related research projects, and authored more than 600 COVID-related publications, advancing our knowledge of the virus and its impacts on our communities. University public health and medical faculty engaged with state and federal policymakers on numerous strategies to slow the spread of the virus.
This year, U-M research spurred a record 31 startups and 522 inventions. Our research enterprise also boosts the national and state economy by creating jobs and driving global competitiveness. The Institute for Research on Innovation and Science reported that U-M contributed $5.6 billion to the national economy through vendor contracts and subcontracts between 2002 and 2019, $1.8 billion of which was spent in Michigan.
We provide opportunity for nearly 65,000 students across our three campuses, and our leadership in innovative teaching and learning is upholding the value of a U-M education. Need-based financial aid remains a top priority, as well. About 27 percent of undergraduate Michigan residents on the Ann Arbor campus pay no tuition.
The COVID-19 pandemic has upended life throughout Michigan, the United States and all around the globe. It has revealed once again the importance of a leading research university and the need for educated, creative and talented people to rise to confront a major societal problem.
We could not continue to lead without the support of our state and the people of Michigan. Thank you for your dedication to U-M, our students, and the hope we foster through our education, research, service and patient care.
Mark S. Schlissel