WSU awarded $125K grant to boost businesses in underserved communities


For the eighth consecutive year, Wichita State University will receive a $125,000 grant from the U.S. Small Business Administration for specialized training, mentoring, and technical assistance for research- and development-focused small businesses under the Federal and State Technology (FAST) Partnership Program

FAST seeks to improve outcomes in the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs for underserved communities by increasing participation from women-owned, rural-based, and socially or economically disadvantaged small business owners.   

“Supporting all our nation’s innovative startups and increasing equitable access to federal research funding is a priority for the SBA — not just because it’s the right thing to do, but because it will build a stronger future for all of us,” said SBA Administrator Isabella Guzman.  

The program will be administered by WSU Strategic Initiatives.

“It will be used to provide training and guidance for new and existing small local businesses,” said Debbie Franklin, WSU associate vice president of Strategic Initiatives. “Our ability to host these programs increases our connections with local businesses and increases their awareness of the multitude of programs and services available at Wichita State to assist them.”

“We’re excited about the ongoing commitment at Wichita State University to support researchers and high-growth startups through the FAST program and SBIR,” said SBA Wichita District Director Wayne Bell. “This represents more resources for local innovators.”

Recipients this year include state and local economic development organizations, Small Business Technology Development Centers, Women’s Business Centers, Procurement Technical Assistance Centers, incubators, accelerators, colleges, and universities.  All awardees will provide support to small businesses developing advanced technologies. 

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