New funding from the U.S. Small Business Administration will allow San Diego State University to create new opportunities for local small businesses, it was announced today.
San Diego State is one of 10 awardees to receive funding for regional economic development and job creation efforts through the SBA’s new pilot initiative “Innovative Economies.” The pilot program supports small businesses participation in regional economic “clusters”—collaborations between small businesses, the public sector, economic development and other organizations.
Cybersecurity and autonomous systems technology
The $600,000, one-year contract will create the San Diego Advanced Defense Technology Cluster, which will focus on cybersecurity and autonomous systems technology (i.e. robotics, advanced defense systems, power/energy innovations, cybersecurity and applied lightweight materials) to help meet critical defense technology needs.
“Maximizing a region’s economic assets is one of the best ways to create long-term job growth, and that’s what SBA’s new Innovative Economies pilot initiative is doing,” said SBA Administrator Karen Mills.
“Today, we are announcing funding support for 10 regional economic clusters. SBA’s support will help expand the opportunities and the role small businesses play in these regional collaborations, which are enhancing the ability to create jobs locally and compete on a national and global scale.
“I’m thrilled to announce the San Diego Advanced Defense Technology Cluster’s participation. They’re creating jobs in the community and making San Diego an industry leader.”
Supporting local businesses
In coordination with its partners, the San Diego Advanced Defense Technology Cluster, led by the San Diego State University Research Foundation, will provide business training, counseling, mentoring, matchmaking and other services to small businesses that focus on critical DOD technologies.
“SDSU will provide local small businesses and inventors with a support system that will help strengthen their business and prepare it for strategic growth,” said SDSU President Stephen L. Weber.
SDSU’s Entrepreneurial Management Center and College of Business will provide mentorship and business training for local businesses identified for the program. SPAWAR Systems Center Pacific and local non-profits CONNECT and the Foundation for Enterprise Development are also partners for the project.
Creating an “Innovative Economy”
SBA’s “Innovative Economies” pilot initiative supports an economic growth strategy known as regional clustering.
Regional clusters aim to grow small businesses, create jobs and strengthen America’s competitiveness. Through this initiative, SBA is supporting local collaborations—or “clusters”—of small businesses, the public sector, economic development and other organizations. These clusters maximize the economic strengths of their region, enhancing the ability to create jobs locally and compete on a national and global scale.