George Mason University
George Mason University Mason
George Mason University

Mason-led Virginia SBDC Network is reaccredited for five more years

December 5, 2017   /   by John Hollis

George Mason University will remain at the forefront of state efforts to help small businesses as the U.S. Small Business Administration has reaccredited the Virginia Small Business Development Center Network for another five years.

Led by George Mason since 2004, the Virginia SBDC Network aims to help grow the state economy by providing business advice, education and resources to small businesses throughout the commonwealth. Mason serves as the state network’s lead institution among 15 different organizations, directly staffing three of the state’s 28 SBDC offices—including the Mason SBDC—while overseeing the management and administration of the rest.

“It’s a seal of approval and affirms that the Virginia Small Business Development Center Network meets the requirement of every state network,” said Jody Keenan, state director for the Virginia SBDC Network. “It allows the center to improve and adopt more programs and sources to meet the ever-changing needs of small businesses.”

The Virginia SBDC Network was previously reaccredited in 2012 and won’t need to do so again until 2022. Accreditation allows network members to apply for federal funds administered by the Office of Small Business Development Centers.

SBDC services are also available to all Mason students, but could be particularly helpful to those students and faculty looking to build a company centered on an innovation or technology.

“The Virginia SBDC Network is one of the finest jewels in Mason’s entrepreneurship crown,” said Sean Mallon, Mason’s vice president for entrepreneurship and innovation, “and I’m so proud that Mason will continue to play such an important role for the coming years.”

In addition to its overall reaccreditation, the Virginia SBDC Network also received its initial technology designation. The commonwealth is now among 18 states nationally to have SBDC strategic plans in place designed to assist companies with innovation commercialization.