LELAND, NC (WECT) – Brunswick Community College is using more than $400,000 in grant money to build an incubator at its campus in Leland. Officials say the addition to the college could bring in hundreds of jobs.
An incubator is a space for start-up industries to get their feet on the ground. Organizers say the goal is to create a low-cost option for small businesses looking to get started in the area.
Congressman Mike McIntyre was in town Monday to present a federal check for $200,000 to the college. With a matching grant from the state, the school will be able to build a 2,800-square-foot space with private access to computers, copy machines, and other on-campus resources.
Four businesses will be able to work in the incubator at a time. Each business will be allowed to stay for three years with the understanding that they will create between 10-20 jobs as they "graduate" from the incubator.
Brunswick Community College President Dr. Susanne Adams is excited about the possibility of providing a work place for start-up companies.
"It certainly will spark the interest of individuals who want to start a business, whether they live in Brunswick county or not," said Adams. "It may bring individuals to Brunswick County that have that idea. So I believe it will put us more on a map.
In addition to the new space, Brunswick Community College will offer on-site training for new employees.
Organizers say they plan to start breaking ground on the new building in the next few months.
Meanwhile, one company is already taking advantage of the new incubator.
RTM Lite U.S.A. is a branch of Arcade Manufacturing. Owner Scott Crump plans to bring the company to Brunswick County, using the incubator as a place to get started.
The company specializes in surfboard accessories, selling its products in 10 different countries.
Crump says most of the manufacturing is currently done in China, so they chose Brunswick County to create a central location on the east coast.
The company plans to hire 10-15 people immediately, with more jobs to come in the future.
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