University of Illinois EDA University Center

The University of Illinois EDA University Center specializes in providing support for incubation, entrepreneurship, and technology-based economic development projects in Illinois with a primary focus on serving downstate communities. The Center provides support and programming for existing incubator development, growth, and expansion of resources throughout Illinois with priority focus on expanding entrepreneurship capacity, programming, services, and resources for technology-driven businesses.

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Submit a Small Business Assistance Application.

EDA Services

  • Small Business Assistance for qualified entrepreneurs through the Shared Services program. This assists entrepreneurs with short-term projects related to marketing, business development, branding, and communications.
  • Expertise from the University of Illinois Department of Urban Planning and EnterpriseWorks incubator to provide assistance to communities seeking to strengthen their entrepreneurial ecosystem and add resources for startup companies. Assistance can be in the form of site visits, sharing of best practices from other comparable communities, and feasibility planning for new programs.

Types of Projects

  • Company name search
  • Defined market research and assessment
  • Logo design and visual branding
  • Pitch deck review
  • Social media strategy review
  • Website development

Referral Partners

  • An incubator
  • Small Business Development Center (SBDC)
  • International Trade Center (ITC)
  • Illinois University Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC)
  • University of Illinois Extension Offices

Previous Projects

View recent projects completed through this program.

Market Research
  • B&A Services Competitor Analysis and Customer Base Enhancement Research (Summer 2019)
  • Jeff's Design Shed Business Renaming and Rebranding (now Bespoke Gift Co.) (Summer 2019)
  • Pack to Fit Industry Analysis (Summer 2019)
  • Thirsty's Taproom Industry Analysis (Summer 2019)
Social Media Strategy
  • Streator Incubator Social Media Post Creation (Spring 2020)

Streator Incubator_Survey Graphic

Visual Branding
  • Blue Line Distribution Logo (Summer 2020)

Blue Line Distribution Logo_Full Color

Corporate Kin_Primary_Logo_Full-Color

  • B&A Services (Spring 2020)

B&A Services_Full Color Logo

  • LMK Innovation logo (Fall 2019)

LMK Innovation_Full Color Logo

  • Dan McDaniel Management logo (Fall 2019)

Dan McDaniel Management_Navy logo

Website Development

This program is supported by federal grant funding from the United States Economic Development Administration. For more information, please contact us at research-park@illinois.edu or 217-333-8324.

Cheri Soliday
Outreach Coordinator, Incubation and Entrepreneurship

Cheri coordinates projects related to the EDA funded programs.