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Lake Superior State University receives $950,000 CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant

Lake Superior State University

SAULT STE. MARIE, MI--   Lake Superior State University received a $956,858 CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant from the Economic Development Administration (EDA) within the U.S. Department of Commerce to purchase lab equipment to build capacity at the Center for Freshwater Research and Education (CFRE).

The project, to be located in a Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Opportunity Zone, will be matched with $239,215 in local funds, is expected to create 20 jobs, and generate $14.2 million in private investment. Opportunity Zones are meant to spur economic development nationwide; there are 288 in Michigan.

“We are ecstatic about this grant because it allows us to leverage our new building and our location at the nexus of three Great Lakes to become leaders in freshwater science and training while also creating opportunities to expand blue economy sectors in our region,” said CFRE Director Dr. Ashley Moerke.

Jeff Hagan, CEO of the Eastern Upper Peninsula Regional Planning & Development Commission, said, “On behalf of the EUP Economic Development District, we are excited to see this EDA investment in CFRE at LSSU. It will no doubt be a boost to the area’s economy and build off the longstanding research the university has been involved in for decades while also helping to transform the St. Marys riverfront in Sault Ste. Marie.”

Dana Gartzke, EDA bureau head who performs the delegated duties of the assistant secretary of commerce for economic development, added, “This investment comes at a crucial time to help Michigan’s and our nation’s economy come roaring back. This project will build economic resiliency in Michigan’s Eastern Upper Peninsula by catalyzing new water-related industries and innovation through expanded training and research services to be provided through Lake Superior State University’s Center for Freshwater Research and Education.”