New Funding to Expand Outreach Centers, Ascent Digital Platform Expand, National Entrepreneurship Week


The Tar Heel Newsletter
February 2022

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Illustration of main street businesses with a red banner and the following text, SBA loves small businesses. The SBA logo is at the bottom.


In Celebration of Black History Month, SBA Administrator Guzman Announces New Funding to Expand Outreach Centers for Women Entrepreneurs through Minority Serving Institutions

$1.5M Will be Awarded to Support the Expansion of the Agency’s Women’s Business Centers Across HBCUs and Higher Education Institutions Serving Hispanic, Tribal and AAPI Communities


Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman announced the availability of $1.5 million for 10 new grant opportunities for established Minority Serving Institutions aspiring to host a Women’s Business Center (WBC) to provide local outcome oriented business services for women entrepreneurs.

As Black History Month gets underway, the announcement highlights the Agency’s commitment to creating funding opportunities that increase equity for small business owners – a priority under Administrator Guzman. Through the SBA’s Office of Women’s Business Ownership’s (OWBO), the WBCs will help entrepreneurs pivot, grow and navigate new opportunities created through President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, such as competing in the burgeoning industries solving climate change and to grow clean-energy supply chains that will help expand global exporting.

The purpose of the new funding will be for up to 10 private, non-profit organizations to provide entrepreneurial development services to women, with an emphasis on socially and economically disadvantaged entrepreneurs in locations that are outside of the geographical areas of existing WBCs.

Eligible applicants include the following institutions of higher education or their affiliates:

  • Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)(as defined in 20 USC §1061)
  • Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs)(as defined in 20 USC § 1101a)
  • Tribal Colleges and University (TCUs) (as defined in 20 USC 1059c)
  • Native Hawaiian Serving Institutions (NHSIs)(as defined in 20 USC § 1059d(b))
  • Alaska Native Serving Institutions (ANSIs)(as defined in 20 USC § 1059d(b)) of higher learning with existing minority entrepreneurship or related programs

Since March 2021 alone, twenty-four new centers have opened. Among the newest WBCs are three affiliated with Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) and two in Puerto Rico, as well several focused on reaching entrepreneurs from rural communities. Currently, OWBO funds and supports the largest WBC network in the history of the SBA, with 140 centers in 49 states and Puerto Rico.

How to Apply

Eligible applicants must be private, non-profit organizations with 501(c) tax-exempt status from the U.S. Treasury’s Internal Revenue Service and must or be affiliated with a Minority Serving Institution.

The application acceptance period for this grant opportunity is Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2022, through Monday, March 14, 2022. Proposals responding to this program must be submitted through by Monday, March 14, 2022, at 11:59 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time (EDT). No other methods of submission will be permitted. Proposals submitted after the stipulated deadline will be rejected without being evaluated.

Interested applicants may direct any questions about the WBC funding opportunity to Donald Smith, SBA Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Office of Women’s Business Ownership, at For issues with, please visit, call the Support Line at 1-800-518-4726, or email


The SBA’s WBC network provides one-on-one counseling, training, networking, workshops, technical assistance, and mentoring to women entrepreneurs on numerous business development topics, including business startup, financial management, marketing, and procurement. To find other WBC locations and additional SBA resources, visit


The Ascent Digital Platform Expands: SBA Introduces Course in Government Contracting to Online Digital Learning Platform

The digital tool now provides women-owned small businesses resources to compete and succeed in the federal marketplace


The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced the launch of Journey 6 of the Ascent e-learning platform focused on educating women business owners about venturing into government contracting to help expand their businesses.

The Government Contracting Journey 6 identifies opportunities and prepares businesses to pursue those prospects. The new journey has six components or excursions:

  • Government As Your Customers – helps the user understand government as a customer.
  • Government Contracting Opportunities – evaluates contracting opportunities with local, state, and federal governments.
  • Government Subcontracting Opportunities – helps to identify subcontracting opportunities.
  • Set-Aside Certifications - guides the business through what is needed to plan and pursue federal government contracting certifications.
  • Federal Solicitations – analyzes the components of the federal solicitation process
  • General Services Administration (GSA) Contracts – analyzes opportunities for GSA contracts.

“Access to digital and online training platforms remain critical to support women entrepreneurs with recovery and knowledge share. Over the last year, nearly 30,000 women entrepreneurs have leveraged the Ascent platform for its online education,” stated SBA Assistant Administrator for Office of Women’s Business Ownership, Natalie Madeira Cofield.As women remain the fastest-growing entrepreneurial segment in the nation, and complementing our in-person centers, Ascent helps SBA reach more women where they are and when they need it.”

“The Office of Entrepreneurial Development is committed to transforming our learning ecosystem to be more timely, relevant and meet small businesses where they are right now. We embody this approach with the release of the Ascent government contracting journey. OED’s Ascent is a significant pillar of our Strategic Learning Initiative within our OED Office of Entrepreneurship Education,” stated SBA Associate Administrator of the Office for Entrepreneurial Development Mark Madrid. “We look forward to announcing more educational initiatives to empower our small business ecosystems, including women-owned firms, to build back better and thrive.”

Women entrepreneurs start and own nearly half of all businesses in the United States employ 9.4 million workers, generate $1.9 trillion in revenue, and represent all industries. Ascent offers several key journeys to assist women business owners with strategies toward growth and success, including Disaster & Economic Recovery, Strategic Marketing, Your People, Your Business Financial Strategy, and Access to Capital. Each journey contains content and tools needed to grow your business. Additional topics will be added over time.

Visit and register for your free access today. For additional opportunities on how women entrepreneurs can start, grow and recover, visit


Photos of four people with the following text, National Entrepreneurship Week, February 12-19, 2022. The SBA logo is at the bottom.


Office of Entrepreneurship Education

During National Entrepreneurship Week take time to visit the SBA Office of Entrepreneurship Education. The Office of Entrepreneurship Education's mission is to provide entrepreneurial information and education, resources and tools to help small businesses succeed. The office is an integral component of Entrepreneurial Development's network of training and counseling services.

The Office of Entrepreneurship Education (OEE) develops and promotes innovative resources for small business owners and prospective entrepreneurs. These resources are designed to assist in the start-up, management, and growth of small businesses. Such resources include specialized training sessions, distance learning, written materials, websites, other means of providing business development, business management, and business growth information.

OEE manages several key initiatives and services that promote entrepreneurial development such as the: Community Navigator Pilot Program, the Emerging Leaders Initiative and Ascent.

For more information visit the website here.



 The Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) will be replacing the DUNS number in SAM. Starting April 4th, 2022

The federal government is changing the unique identifier used for entities from the D-U-N-S® Number to the Unique Entity ID (SAM), generated by Today, the two numbers appear side-by-side in the following systems:

● eSRS

On April 4, 2022, the D-U-N-S® Number will be removed from all of these systems and the Unique Entity ID (SAM) will be the authoritative identifier.

Your entity has a DUNS Number and is registered in
If you have an active or inactive registration in today, you’ve already been assigned a Unique Entity ID (SAM). It’s viewable on your entity registration record in Learn how to view your Unique Entity ID (SAM) here.

Subcontractors and Subrecipients Who Use the D-U-N-S® Number for Reporting: You need to get a Unique Entity ID (SAM) at by April 4, 2022. 

For more information on the transition click here. 


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The Office of Business Development is hosting its open hour “Straight Talk!

The Office of Business Development is hosting its open hour “Straight Talk!” on the 8(a) Business Development (8(a) BD) Program. Whether a firm is thinking about applying to the 8(a) BD Program or having been certified into the program or just have general questions about the 8(a) BD program, please notify them to join us.

The Purpose: To provide small businesses with a direct line to SBA 8(a) BD employees who can answer questions and provide information relative to 8(a) Business Development Program’s benefits and eligibility requirements for 8(a) certification.  

Program Schedule:  Third Wednesday each month - 2:00 pm to 3:00pm (EST)

Call in information:  Note: not intended to be a video call, but only a conference call. 

Microsoft Teams “Straight Talk” meeting Public Access

Public can access event by audio only.

+1 202-765-1264 United States, Washington DC

Phone Conference ID: 217 121 169#

All questions that you may have concerning this event should be directed to Lloyd Calderon at


Government contracting


7(j) Management and Technical Training


SBA has partnered with Stover & Associates Inc, to provide on-line government contracting training. From your computer, you’ll link to an instructor in a live, real-time, interactive learning experience. You’ll become part of a virtual classroom where you can ask questions, seek guidance and participate in class discussions and interactive exercises.

Click Here To Register

February 2022 Training

Negotiating Government Contracts

February 14, 2022

1:00—5:00 pm EST

Understanding the Request for Proposal

February 15, 2022

1:00—3:30 pm EST

Developing the Technical & Past Performance Proposal

February 16, 2022

1:00—4:00 pm EST

Developing the Cost Proposal

February 17, 2022

1:00—4:00 pm EST

Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Primer

February 23, 2022

1:00—5:00 pm EST

Audits & Accounting Systems

February 24, 2022

1:00—4:00 pm EST

Managing & Administrating Government     Contracts

February 28, 2022

5:00—8:00 pm EST



SBA 7j Management and Technical Assistance Program


How to Successfully Bid on Construction Projects
Thursday, February 10, 2022

12:00PM - 1:30PM ET
*lunchtime learn*


Modernize & Digitize Workshop:
Learn to Modernize Your Business with Technology

Thursday, February 17, 2021

12:00PM - 1:30PM ET
*lunchtime learn*


If you have any questions or would like to learn more about the SBA 7j Management and Technical Assistance Program, please feel free to visit: or email


Mission and Installation Contracting Command Advance Planning Briefing for Industry March 7-10, 2022

The Mission and Installation Contracting Command (MICC) is hosting the Second Annual command-wide virtual Advance Planning Briefing for Industry (APBI). This event will focus on educating Industry on the MICC and its Mission Partners and will provide a comprehensive overview of projected MICC requirements.

The command-wide, virtual briefing is the only small business outreach event for the year outlining acquisition needs across the Army being executed by the MICC. Additional information including a registration link can be found on

For more information click here.


SBA Account Login and Registration Portals

Wondering how to access your SBA account login for loans, grants, or contracting?  This webpage has details of how to do that for your Paycheck Protection Program, Economic Injury Disaster Loans, 7a and 504 loans, Shuttered Venues Operators Grant, and more.

It can help existing borrowers and contractors monitor their loan status, find the pages to set up and manage online payments, and more.  

Click Here


Helpful Links

Disaster (EIDL loans or advances/grants): or (833) 853-5638.

SBA PPP Webpage

To report waste, fraud, or abuse: OIG hotline (800) 767-0385 or


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About the U.S. Small Business Administration 

The U.S. Small Business Administration makes the American dream of business ownership a reality. As the only go-to resource and voice for small businesses backed by the strength of the federal government, the SBA empowers entrepreneurs and small business owners with the resources and support they need to start, grow or expand their businesses, or recover from a declared disaster. It delivers services through an extensive network of SBA field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations. To learn more, visit