UNI Business & Community Services represents 13 distinct outreach programs committed to improving the economic vitality of our home, Iowa.

From an entrepreneur needing help to turn their dream into reality, to a manufacturer needing environmental assistance or 3D mold printing, and even a business needing in-depth market research to gain a competitive advantage, we have a program that can help.

Every service we provide, from regional economic development to business environmental assistance, works together towards a common goal: Building a Better Iowa


BCS Programs serve all 99 counties in Iowa

Hand with plant

255 jobs were created by new and growing ventures in 2021 

IASourceLink Logo

Entrepreneurs were served via IASourceLink.com

board of post its

Institute for Decision Making

The Institute for Decision Making supplies Iowans with the knowledge, tools and guidance to take organized community and economic development actions to improve their communities, regions and the state.

Iowa Waste Reduction Center

The Iowa Waste Reduction Center provides direct environmental and energy efficiency assistance to Iowa small businesses, works throughout the Midwest to fight food waste, and provides customized painter training to Department of Defense facilities nationwide.

Iowa Waste Reduction Center
suit with leaf tie

UNI John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center

The UNI John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center (UNI JPEC) provides a dynamic and supportive environment to empower the next generation of entrepreneurs and innovators.

UNI John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center
student learning from JPEC staff

Strategic Marketing Services

Strategic Marketing Services (SMS) conducts full-service market research to deliver customized, targeted and actionable marketplace intelligence.


Family Business Center

The UNI Family Business Center provides consulting, peer learning, events, programming, and networking opportunities to strengthen Iowa’s family-owned businesses. 

Family Business Center
Koch Construction Next Gen

Advance Iowa

Advance Iowa delivers facilitated services, resources, and programming that assist small and mid-sized firms in the key areas of innovation, strategic growth, and succession planning.

Advance Iowa
Man at computer

Small Business Development Center at UNI

The UNI Small Business Development Center (SBDC) provides free, confidential, customized business advice in the Cedar Valley and Northeast Iowa.

MCC AMC Equipment

Metal Casting / Foundry 4.0 Centers

The Metal Casting Center & Foundry 4.0 Centers are nationally recognized leaders in foundry research, additive manufacturing, applied technology and technical assistance. They provide hands-on experience and training to students giving them the opportunity to work at innovative facilities with modern casting technology. Past clients have included small and large companies alike, as well as all five branches of the U.S. Department of Defense.


The Center for Energy & Environmental Education (CEEE) collaborates with communities in energy conservation, renewable energy, local food systems and environmental health.


The Geoinformatics Training, Research, Education & Extension Center (GeoTREE) dispenses unique geospatial technology application expertise to federal, state and local agencies and organizations.


The Recycling & Reuse Technology Transfer Center (RRTTC) solves problems and issues research assistance in concerns related to solid waste.

Tallgrass Prairie Center

The Tallgrass Prairie Center empowers people to value and restore resilient, diverse tallgrass prairie.

Tallgrass Prairie Center Building image

Intellectual Property

Are you a UNI community member with a novel idea or research you'd like to pursue? Have you noticed a product or process that can be improved? 

Enter the UNI Innovation and Disclosure Competition and win some seed money for your idea. UNI Business and Community Services, the Intellectual Property Team, and the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs are sponsoring a simple competition to generate new ideas and disclosures across campus. The top five disclosures will win $500 each and receive additional support for their idea or research. All you need to do is fill out this form by Nov. 18, 2022 and submit it to bill.harwood@uni.edu.

Learn more about IP at UNI on the Advance Iowa website.