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Business Innovation Group Receives Grant for Veterans Business Outreach Center

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The Business Innovation Group (BIG) at Georgia Southern University announced today the receipt of a grant from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) that will fund a Veterans Business Outreach Center (VBOC) at City Campus in downtown Statesboro.

Georgia Southern is one of six locations to receive funding through this SBA $1.5 million grant, bringing the total number of VBOCs to 19 nationwide.

“This new Veteran Business Outreach Center supports veterans in leveraging the great skills and qualities they developed during military service toward being a successful business owner,” said Terri Denison, SBA’s Georgia District director. “Traits like leadership, self-motivation and discipline are instilled in veterans, and it greatly prepares them to be entrepreneurs. Nearly 10 percent of all U.S. small businesses are veteran-owned, and that is a number we would like to see continue to grow.”

The grant, offered by SBA’s Office of Veterans Business Development, enables each VBOC to provide entrepreneurial training, comprehensive business assessment and mentoring to active duty service members, veterans and service-disabled veterans, National Guard and Reservists and military spouses interested in starting or growing a small business.

“It is a great honor to be named one of only 19 Veteran Business Outreach Centers in the United States,” said Dominique Halaby, director of BIG. “We are excited to add this new program to our growing list of services at the Business Innovation Group, and to be in a position to help Georgia and South Carolina veterans, active duty service members and their families in launching and growing their own business.”

States and regions were selected as potential VBOC sites based on “Boots to Business” program demand, military installation, and transitioning population data.

The VBOC grant funding competition was open to eligible institutions of higher learning, private organizations or businesses, non-profit community-based organizations, state, local or tribal governmental agencies and non-profit organizations.  Each award is made for a base project period of 12 months, with one 12-month renewal option period.

Georgia Southern University, a public Carnegie Doctoral/Research University founded in 1906, offers more than 125 degree programs serving approximately 20,500 students. Through eight colleges, the University offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs built on more than a century of academic achievement. Georgia Southern is recognized for its student-centered and hands-on approach to education. GeorgiaSouthern.edu.

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