Iona forms partnership with Syracuse University’s IVMF to assist veterans in entrepreneurial ambitions


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The Hynes Institute for Entrepreneurship & Innovation set collobrate with IVMF fostering new opportunities for veteran entrepreneurs and their familes.

Jocelyn Arroyo-Ariza, News Editor

Iona is partnering with Syracuse University’s Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF)’s Community Navigator Pilot Program. Funded by the U.S. Small Business Administration, the $5 million federal grant will assist veteran and military spouse businesses. IVMF is recognized as one of only eight Tier 1 grantees, chosen as part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s $100 million Community Navigator Pilot Program. Instituted as part of the American Rescue Plan of 2021, the competitive grant program will help small businesses that were severely affected by the pandemic.  

IVMF boasts powerful partnerships that are designed to help veterans reach their goals. They are set to work with Texas A&M, Florida State University, Dog Tag Bakery and StreetShares. IVMF cites that 92% of entrepreneurs that were assisted by their programs are still operating their business today.  

Throughout the pandemic, IVMF unveiled two virtual entrepreneurship programs: EBV Spark and R.I.S.E (Resilience, Innovate, Sustain, Evaluate). These programs are intended to help veteran and military spouse entrepreneurs navigate and adjust their business practices amidst the pandemic.   

Having the ability to depend on IVMF’s best practices, which have supported over 75,000 participants, to deliver cost-free entrepreneurship programs such as Boots to Business (B2B), Veteran Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship (V-WISE) and the Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans (EBV), the program is anticipated to help many more.  

Veterans have faced several difficulties breaking into the entrepreneurship world that are unique to their situation. Many endure numerous challenges in launching their business, whether it be comprehending capital readiness, finding connections, navigating the certification process dilemmas or the lack of help from medical and disability service providers.  

For the next two years, the program aims to help thousands of veterans and families that will promote growth and success. The Hynes Institute for Entrepreneurship & Innovation will provide various valuable resources. For example, veterans will be given individual attention that comprehends the complexities of the Westchester environment and community, as well as an expansive network system of alumni and partners that are committed to meet the distinctive demands of veterans and their families.  

The money will be allocated to promote entrepreneurship education, small business technical assistance, loan preparation, access to capital and capital readiness, corporate and federal contracting and networking.  Iona College’s Hynes Institute obtained over $350,000 in funding to collaborate with the IVMF to back the local and national veteran entrepreneurship community.