|Program||# of Grants||EDA Funds|
|Economic Adjustment Assistance||1||$500,000|
EDA awarded nine grants totaling $4.7 million to recipients in the State of Mississippi during Fiscal Year 2012. These investments will help Mississippi communities advance their regionally developed economic development strategies by implementing projects that support the development of medical research and advanced manufacturing. These grants also include a new University Center award to Mississippi State University to provide technical assistance and research and development tools to increase productivity, spur innovation, and promote entrepreneurship to help increase long-term regional competitiveness and economic diversification. These investments are expected to create or retain 616 jobs according to grantee estimates.
Investment Spotlight: EDA Challenge Winner Accelerates Cluster Development in Rural Mississippi
Between 2006 and 2011, the State of Mississippi endured plant closures and job losses in three of its key industry clusters: agriculture, automotive, and furniture manufacturing. Mississippi State University (MSU), working with a diverse group of internal and external partners, was awarded $500,000 from EDA through 2012 The Rural Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge. Focusing on Mississippi’s Appalachian and Delta regions, MSU identified critical needs in 61 of the state’s most rural and economically distressed counties. With additional funding provided by federal agency partners the US Department of Agriculture, Appalachian Regional Commission, and the Delta Regional Authority, MSU’s project advances four core goals: strengthening communities, expanding clusters, growing companies, and developing entrepreneurs.
By working directly with prospective entrepreneurs, MSU will find and develop linkages among the region’s small existing businesses and entrepreneurs and the region’s strategic clusters. The project will also identify strong growth prospects from the region’s existing industries. The proposed program targets the creation and retention of over 500 jobs, with an accompanying economic development impact of over $30 million including private investment and cost savings.