USM’s Accelerator off to fast start

by Wally Northway

Published: June 15,2010

Tags: business incubator, education, Entrepreneurs, higher education, start-up companies

HATTIESBURG — Just three months after opening its doors, the University of Southern Mississippi’s (USM’s) business incubator – called The Accelerator – is operating in high gear.

Officially labeled The National Materials Science Innovation and Commercialization Accelerator, the new venture became the first facility to open in The Garden, the university’s Innovation and Commercialization Park, back in March of this year. At 60,000 square feet, The Accelerator provides space, technology and professional advice for start-up companies.

Sunny Corral, executive director of The Accelerator, said the incubator’s fast-paced start represents an encouraging sign to the business climate in South Mississippi.

“Despite the current economy, after only three months of operation, The Accelerator’s incubator space is at more than 60 percent capacity,” said Corral. “This clearly indicates that the need to connect early-stage science companies with resources existed in Hattiesburg and in Mississippi.”

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