MSU’s Veterans Business Outreach Center named VBOC of the Year

2024 VOBC of the Year Award
From left to right: Mark L. Scott, director of the Mississippi State Veterans Business Outreach Center, accepts the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Veterans Business Outreach Center of the Year Award from Tim Green, U.S. SBA Office of Veterans Business Development deputy associate administrator. (Submitted photo)

Contact: Aspen Harris

STARKVILLE, Miss.—Mississippi State’s Veterans Business Outreach Center was named the Veterans Business Outreach Center of the Year by the U.S. Small Business Administration as part of the 2024 National Small Business Week, which runs through May 4.

2024 VOBC of the Year Award
Pictured from left to right with U.S. SBA Administrator Isabel Casillas Guzman, center, are Debbie Scott, MSU Boots to Business Revenue Readiness program director; Mark L. Scott, VBOC director; Mike Pornovets, VBOC business counselor; and Natalie Rhodes, VBOC/B2BRR program coordinator. (Submitted photo)

One of only 28 VBOCs in the country, MSU’s center was awarded the honor by SBA Administrator Isabel Casillas Guzman, a member of the U.S. Cabinet. Celebrated for more than 60 years, NSBW recognizes the economic contributions of small business owners, advocates and lending partners.

“We are thrilled with this recognition for the Veterans Business Outreach Center. The team does excellent work with their clients, and we’re proud to see them honored for what they do,” said Scott Grawe, dean of the MSU College of Business. “Entrepreneurs and small business owners are an important part of the MSU business community, and we have resources in place to help them succeed.”

Established in 2015, MSU’s VBOC serves the U.S. military community in Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana. The center provides active duty-transitioning service members, veterans, reservists, National Guard members and military spouses with programs and services to start, grow and expand their small business.

The center provides services including business training, mentoring and referrals. It also offers a two-day Boots to Business Introduction to Entrepreneurship course for transitioning military members, as well the Boots to Business Reboots Introduction to Entrepreneurship course for veterans already separated from the military.

To learn more about the U.S. Small Business Administration, visit  For more information on MSU’s Veterans Business Outreach Center, visit

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