Grants Awarded


MEP Digital Supply Chain Network

The North Carolina Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NCMEP) is the recipient of a $1M, three-year grant from the U.S Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in support of its newly formed MEP Digital Supply Chain Network (MDSCN). The MDSCN coalition is led by NCMEP and is joined by MEP Centers from Maryland and Massachusetts.

MDSCN will use the new funding to design assessment and training strategies for small and medium-sized manufacturers (SMM) in order to meet the demands of digital supply chains, which use real-time data to monitor and deliver products and services.

Using the results of the assessment, MDSCN will deliver MEP services that are customized to meet the needs, business goals and readiness level of each manufacturer. MDSCN will help targeted SMMs develop roadmaps to increase digital supply chain presence and participation.

To learn more, please contact Fiona M. Baxter, Ph.D Associate Executive Director, NC State University Industry Expansion Solutions, 919-600-0901.


Advanced Technological Education Coordination Network for Robotics/Automation and Cybersecurity Knowledge Sharing

In July 2020, NC State University was awarded $443,619 from the National Science Foundation to support an Advanced Technological Education (ATE) coordination network project that brings together academic institutions, MEPs, and other organizations to develop and promote technician training and workforce education at the convergence of robotics/automation and cybersecurity. Along with NCMEP, initial members of the coordination network include six community colleges, the NC Community College System, the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing Institute (ARM), the Digital Manufacturing Institute (MxD), the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE), and the MEP Centers from Illinois (IMEC), Michigan (MMTC), and South Carolina (SCMEP).

As manufacturing companies continue to move toward more automated and connected facilities, content that ties cybersecurity to robotics/automation will need to be incorporated into technician training programs. Working together, network member organizations will collaborate and promote existing content and create new content to enable technician training that prepares individuals to work in a cyber-physical manufacturing environment.

To learn more, please visit our website, or contact the project’s Principal Investigator, Evelyn Brown, Ph.D., Director, Extension Research and Development, NC State University Industry Expansion Solutions, 252.414.1555.

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