EDA Announces Funding for Entrepreneurial, Workforce Development in OK, PA SC, WY

September 22, 2016

Over the last several months, the Economic Development Administration (EDA) has announced millions of dollars in grants to support tech-based economic development efforts in communities across the country (see recent Digest articles from August 18 and September 8). The most recent announcements of grant funding will provide targeted funding to expand and build facilities that support entrepreneurial/business development in Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, and Wyoming as well as workforce efforts in South Carolina. Each of the grants also addresses a specific regional need or key industries including growth in advanced manufacturing sectors, attraction of foreign direct investment, and support for key regional tech-focused industries such as agriculture and healthcare.

Oklahoma

Two organizations located in Oklahoma City will receive $1.9 million in grants to provide business and technical support to manufacturing and service companies and to purchase critical equipment needed to boost workforce training opportunities in the medical sector. The Oklahoma Center for Advancement of Science and Technology (OCAST) will receive $1 million to provide business and technical support to Oklahoma manufacturing and service companies to help them diversify their products and expand sales globally. In addition to support for OCAST, Oklahoma State University will receive a $940,000 grant to provide state-of-the-art teaching equipment for the new Allied Health facility in Oklahoma City. The new equipment will support efforts to train students in fields including nurse science, diagnostic medical sonography, health care administration, and dietetic technology.

Pennsylvania

EDA announced a $600,000 grant to East Stroudsburg University (ESU) in East Stroudsburgto expand the university’s accelerator office space/services to support local entrepreneurs in the region. The primary purpose of the grant is to add an additional floor of office space to the ESU accelerator to increase its number of startup companies that the ESU accelerator can house. In addition to providing additional space for new tenants, the grant also will support the creation of an International Innovation Program that will work to attract foreign investment to the region.

South Carolina

Through its Skills for Business Initiative, the EDA announced a $2 million grant to Horry-Georgetown Technical College in Conway to support the construction of a 30,000-sq.-ft. building dedicated to advanced manufacturing training. The new facility will allow Horry-Georgetown Technical College to offer career development training in mechatronics, advanced welding, robotics, and machine tooling.

Wyoming

Eastern Wyoming Community College in Torringtonwill receive a $1.5 million grant to help build the Agricultural Technology Education Center (ATEC), which will provide customized training and degrees for students in the agriculture business sector. The new facility will include new laboratories for training and education as well as facilities to foster workforce partnerships in the region. The grant was made through EDA’s Skills for Business Initiative. 

Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Wyomingmanufacturing, dept of commerce, eda