More than $300,000 in grant funding has been awarded through the Regional Node Planning Grant program to support the development of regional nodes across Missouri.
The goal of the Regional Node Planning Grant Program is to assist entrepreneurial support organizations throughout Missouri in collaborating and leveraging their assets to effectively support innovation and entrepreneurship through coordinated partnerships within the node.
This grant program builds upon the strategies developed in the Catalyzing Innovation Report and aligns MTC’s priority to fund organizations and programs with the report’s strategies and action items.
The planning efforts for nodes across Missouri are being led by nine organizations, covering 75 counties or 66% of the state, in this initial round of planning grants. In the spring of 2024, a full Regional Node Implementation Grant Program will be open to organizations awarded the planning grant as well as from other organizations with a plan to create and implement a “regional node”.
A successful regional node should serve as a front door for the regional entrepreneurial community, providing easy access to resources for entrepreneurs to launch or grow their businesses, thereby expanding the state’s entrepreneurial capacity.
Each organization awarded the planning grant has identified two or more partner organizations that will participate in the planning efforts and be part of their regional node. The following organizations have had their Regional Node Planning Grant proposals funded:
• Bootheel Regional Corporation
• Duree Center for Entrepreneurship at Lindenwood University
• Missouri Innovation Center, Inc
• OPO Startups Foundation
• Ozark Foothills Development Association
• Southeast Missouri Regional Planning and Economic Development Commission
• Springfield Business Development Corporation
• UMKC Innovation Center