|Program||# of Grants||EDA Funds|
|Economic Adjustment Assistance||1||$289,337|
Massachusetts is internationally known as a top producer of quality education, technology, and innovation advancements. From 2013 to 2014, the state’s GDP increased from $441 billion to $460 billion with the “professional, scientific, and technical services” industry accounting for 22.6% of that growth. What provides Massachusetts’ distinct competitive advantage is more than just its world class colleges and universities, but its commitment to building a strong and thriving innovation ecosystem of incubators, accelerators, venture capital funds, and research facilities.
Since 2009, the Venture Development Center (VDC), a freestanding institution of the University of Massachusetts-Boston located in Dorchester, has played a key role in supporting this growing sector. From 2009 to 2014, business startups at the VDC created over 238 new jobs and stimulated upwards of $79 million in private investment. EDA has assisted in VDC’s efforts to increase the region’s innovation capacity development through two construction grants to the UMass system. In 2008, EDA provided assistance to fund initial construction, and, in 2015, invested $239,337 to support Phase II development for the VDC. The project converted an underutilized former cafeteria into wet laboratory units to accommodate new start-ups in the life sciences industry. When completed, the expanded Center will be a hub for microbusiness incubation, business acceleration, and supportive business services that will create jobs and attract private investment to the region. Most recently, VDC partner SQZ Biotech and Roche announced a $500 million collaboration in cancer fighting cell engineering technology.