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Every Monday at 6:42 a.m. and 8:42 a.m., Rob Gilligan provides information on what's happening in the area of regional development in Southeast Missouri. Rob is the President and CEO of the Cape Chamber.

Let's Talk Business: Let's Go Redhawks!

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Today kicks off the fall semester for Southeast Missouri State University as thousands of students return to Cape Girardeau to start the school year, and that is good news for our local economy.

Back to school is an exciting time as the Cape community sees a population surge from students returning to campus. With roughly ten thousand students enrolled, plus faculty and staff members that are gearing back up for the school year we feel an immediate impact of activity and life on day one.

One of the great benefits of being a college town is the events and activities that we get to engage with. The Athletic Department is busy getting ready for RedHawks Football, Volleyball, Soccer and Cross Country, events hosted here in the community. The sound of music and the sights are artist start to fill the area around the River Campus in preparation for another season of great arts performances.

For our area businesses back to school means a return of an important customer base. In a report released earlier this spring on the economic impact that SEMO provides one of the stats that was important for our local businesses was the fact that “SEMO student spending adds $14.5 million to the Missouri economy” the vast majority of that right here in Cape Girardeau. As classes get underway and the community starts to buzz with the activity of playing host to a Division One University the business community will once again feel the positive impact of being a “College Town.”

Let’s Go Redhawks!

Rob is the President and CEO of the Cape Chamber.