Surfacing from a business-friendly startup hub and grassroots tech movement, the Central SC Region has built a dynamic community of tech talent, entrepreneurs, and business owners. Our network of colleges and universities award twice as many science and engineering degrees compared to the national average, and produce 20% more computer and software graduates. That talent pipeline funnels into our growing list of global tech companies, including Capgemini, Softdocs, Duck Creek Technology and PwC.
Our Region also presents the perfect place to make your dreams a reality. Columbia startups tap into plentiful resources, initiatives, and collaborative spaces to bring ideas to life. Let Central SC be your tech springboard.
In Central SC, resources and initiatives like GrowCo, Innovate Columbia, 1 Million Cups Columbia, and the South Carolina Research Authority provide opportunities for networking, funding, and marketing your startup, and have created a community for celebrating our entrepreneurs.
The USC/Columbia Technology Incubator brings together academia and tech in a 40,000-square-foot incubator facility, home to 40+ early stage technology and innovation-based startup companies, while Benedict College Business Development Center offers space, training and other resources for minority entrepreneurs.
Resources for capital and small business funding include:
IT-oLogy offers IT certification to help you get a competitive edge and increase your earning potential. Plus, they host events, including Cyber Saturdays and WISE gatherings (Women in Information Technology Science and Engineering).
Midland Technical College’s Center for Entrepreneurial Success (CES) provides workspace, expertise and tools to current and future students, and includes an Entrepreneurship Certificate curriculum.
Benedict College is the only federally-funded HBCU in the nation with statewide coverage operating a Women’s Business Center.
The University of South Carolina’s Darla Moore School of Business Entrepreneurship program develops and prepares young entrepreneurs to shake up the industry and make their dreams a reality.
Claflin University launched a EDA University Center in 2022 to support commercialization efforts, high-growth entrepreneurship, workforce development, business expansion and innovation cultivation.
Its.cola is an educational and networking hub for insurance technology employees and employers. Members of this collaborative community share knowledge, explore new ways to innovate, and continuously work optimize Columbia’s insurtech industry.
The City of Columbia Office of Business Opportunities provides courses for entrepreneurs seeking support to get their businesses going or take them to a higher level. For companies with less than five employees, check out NxLevel Micro Entrepreneur Training. To get the tools you need to advance your company and learn more about budgeting, sales, management and operations, sign up for FastTrac.
Develop Carolina, a software development fellowship spearheaded by the South Carolina Department of Commerce, became officially registered as an apprenticeship with the U.S. Department of Labor in 2022. The new, paid apprenticeship for software engineers is open to all South Carolinians who have skills, training or education in a software development-related field.
Central SC is home to several co-working spaces and makerspaces to help entrepreneurs, creators and remote workers find their stride. These include:
Browse our latest news and read about our ambassadors to see what life is really like in Central SC.
Applications for the South Carolina State Fair’s Ride of Your Life Scholarship open Wednesday, which is awarded each year to 50 high school seniors in the state. According to the SC State Fair, the $6,000 scholarships are awarded at an annual rate of $1,500. Recipients are chosen based on academic and extracurricular achievement, communication skills, […]
Riverbanks Zoo and Garden is set to open the Darnall W. and Susan F. Boyd Aquarium & Reptile Conservation Center on March 2. The multi-million dollar renovations were supported by The Boyd Foundation, to transform the heart of the zoo into a state-of-the-art animal care facility to provide guests with an engaging experience that places Riverbanks’ critical role in wildlife […]