The New Mexico Federal and State Technology Partnership Program, housed at New Mexico State University’s Arrowhead Center, was one of just 21 universities and organizations nationwide to receive a FAST grant this year from the U.S. Small Business Administration.
NM FAST, which is entering its third year of funding, will use the $125,000 award to provide free proposal development assistance to small businesses across New Mexico that are pursuing Small Business Innovation and Small Business Technology Transfer funding.
The SBIR/STTR programs are administered by the SBA, and collectively support more than $2.5 billion in federal research and development funding to small businesses every year. Federal agencies with R&D budgets that exceed $100 million must allocate 3.2 percent of their R&D budget to support these programs’ 11 agencies currently participate.
“The New Mexico SBA office is excited to team with Arrowhead Center as one of our newest SBA FAST partners, promoting the importance and value of the SBIR and STTR programs for our entrepreneurs to develop commercially viable innovations,” said John Garcia, deputy director of the NM SBA office. “Our new partnership will enhance the technical assistance and training for every stage of business growth and development creating jobs throughout the State of New Mexico.”
Proposals were jointly reviewed by the SBA, the Department of Defense and the National Science Foundation, and FAST awards were made based on the merits of each proposal. Only one proposal was submitted per state and required the endorsement of the governor.
The NM FAST program has placed particular emphasis on engaging with small businesses in rural New Mexico, educating them on the SBIR/STTR programs and how they can take advantage of the non-dilutive funding offered every year. The state has a wealth of innovative ideas and technologies that remain untapped or shelved because they lack the funding to get off the ground. The SBIR/STTR programs provide that critical support necessary during the R&D and pre-commercialization phase.
“We’re very excited to see more funding for our partners at Arrowhead as they continue to help New Mexico companies succeed,” said Economic Development Cabinet Secretary Matt Geisel.
NM FAST will continue to provide New Mexico small businesses with free assistance via mentoring, match-making, and SBIR/STTR workshops. New initiatives will include the build-out of an online resource library, which will feature informational video podcasts and audio files, along with documents such as compliance matrices and proposal templates.
“Arrowhead Center looks forward to continuing the work NM FAST has built during its first two years of funding,” said Kathryn Hansen, director and CEO of Arrowhead Center. “Providing hands-on assistance to small businesses throughout the state not only fulfills Arrowhead’s mission to provide entrepreneurs access to critical resources, it also contributes to New Mexico’s economy at-large.”
The NM FAST Partnership Program provides small businesses with:
Assistance in identifying appropriate solicitations and topic areas;
How-to information on agency registrations and electronic proposal submission;
Guidance on proposal preparation, including assessments of technical objectives and hypotheses and drafting supporting documents such as biographical sketches, resources and budgets;
Specifics on the target agency’s requirements for commercialization content in Phase I/Phase II proposals; and
Technical reviews and edits of proposals with feedback.
In addition, NM FAST provides eligible small businesses micro-grants of $650 to cover the expenses of professional services such as commercialization plan assistance, development partner identification assistance, research partner identification assistance, counsel on patents and technology licensing, and indirect cost rate advisement for proposal development.
For more information, contact Dana Catron, program manager for the NM FAST program, at 505-358-4039 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Author: Dana Catron – NMSU