We hope you had an opportunity to celebrate and give thanks over the Thanksgiving weekend, and that you and your team have a healthy and happy holiday season!

This month's newsletter highlights how Polaris MEP is conducting a large study of Rhode Island manufacturing to help set priorities and funding for future years. It's important that the textile community is heard, and we encourage you to complete the survey to provide input on this project.  

We are looking forward to 2022, and developing new RITIN programming -- we welcome your ideas for programming and webinar topics -- and hope to see you soon! 
Polaris MEP is collecting data as part of a larger study focused exclusively on RI’s manufacturing sector. The study will generate data to inform and guide state investments in the manufacturing community.
The Rhode Island Textile Innovation Network received startup funding from the state in 2017 as a result of input from the textile manufacturing community in surveys such as this one, and your input today will give the state and Polaris MEP important data on the current state of manufacturing in Rhode Island.

This survey is part of a larger study that will influence funding for manufacturing in the future.  YOUR feedback will help the state, Polaris MEP, RITIN, and other organizations develop and deliver programs that help YOUR business remain competitive and successful in the years to come.
The survey is anonymous and takes between 4 and 9 minutes. Please take a few minutes today to complete it. Thanks in advance! 
In November, the Rhode Island Textile Innovation Network's Chairman, Michael Woody moderated a panel presentation at the IFAI Expo in Nashville discussing RITIN and how industry, academic and government partnerships have helped create opportunities for textile companies in Rhode Island. The presenters included Clare King, President of Propel, LLC, Mary Johnson, Manager of 401 Tech Bridge and RITIN, and Christian Cowan, Chief Operating Officer of the University of Rhode Island Research Foundation and Executive Director of 401 Tech Bridge talked about collaborations with URI, Rhode Island Commerce, and the RI Department of Labor and Training--and how companies collaborate to meet larger needs, including piloting workforce programming and responding to the need for PPE. 

On December 1, the Department of Defense rolled out their FY22 SBIR/STTR projects for the small business community.  The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs are highly competitive programs that encourage domestic small businesses to engage in Federal Research/Research and Development (R/R&D) with the potential for commercialization.

401 Tech Bridge is moderating a webinar on Monday, December 13, at 1PM to introduce the local support system that is in place for businesses who wish to pursue SBIR/STTR opportunities. See the full agenda and register here.

Looking ahead to 2022 and opportunities within the defense sector? Check out these two recorded programs:

The Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division Newport presented technologies available for licensing at an event hosted by 401 Tech Bridge, the URI Business Engagement Center, Rhode Island Commerce and NUWC on December 6. Several of the technologies are relevant to the textile community. A recording of the presentations will be available next week. In the meantime, take a look at the quad charts summarizing these technologies:

Photonics & Laser Technology
Inflatable Structures
Crimp Imbalanced Fabrics
Patch Antenna Retro Kit
Broadband Linear Antennas


A recording of a 2- day workshop focused on the future textile priorities, hosted by RITIN and the 401 Tech Bridge, featured presentations by:
  • Navy Supply Systems Command
  • Naval Exchange Services Command
  • Navy Clothing and Textile Research Facility
The recording includes presentations and a panel discussion with subject matter experts for Navy uniforms, protective clothing, testing, materials and business development. Topics to include:
  • Small business development opportunities
  • Applied research areas
  • Potential areas of basic research applying them towards Navy and military requirements
The Textile and Clothing Technology Workshop was convened and supported by 401 Tech Bridge, the Naval X Northeast Tech Bridge, the Rhode Island Textile Innovation Network and the North Carolina Military Business Center.

Watch the recording here.
Congratulations to Barb Jackson and the We Make RI team who received a network matching grant of $183,240 from RI Commerce at the December board meeting. This funding will support We Make RI training programs, including their Industrial Sewing Training program, which was the subject of an RITIN Executive Insights webinar with Michael Woody earlier this year. 
Secure your tickets now for the Rhode Island Manufacturers Association Annual Award Dinner, scheduled for February 15, 2022, at the Biltmore Graduate Hotel in Providence. Early bird pricing is available for tickets purchased before January 4, 2022. The RIMA Awards Dinner is always a great opportunity to network and celebrate the manufacturing community in Rhode Island. Tickets and information here.
© RITIN Rhode Island Textile Innovation Network ~ E: info@ritin.org 

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