Convening in Mississippi’s state capital this coming November, the NGA’s first regional graphene conference features Governor Bryant, “Mississippi’s steward for business” as keynote speaker. Known for strategically targeting legislation and workforce development, Governor Phil Bryant has continued the 80-year schedule in development of the state’s manufacturing industry. He also serves on the National Graphene Association Advisory Board. The Graphene Innovation and Research Conference promises to bring together stakeholders who are able to collaborate on graphene-focused technologies which are sure to have significant economic impact in the Southeastern region of the United States, as well as nationally.
Because of Bryant’s firm belief in the value of education, the governor has led Mississippi in implementing transformational public education reforms, promoting economic development and building a competitive business climate that attracts major employers. Mississippi manufacturing companies have partnered with local colleges to implement curriculums specifically for their industries.
It is a natural fit to also convene the first meeting of the newly formed NGA Academic Council at the conference in Jackson. Led by the University of Mississippi Center for Graphene Research and Innovation, representatives from the eight member universities of the Academic Council will explore collaboration venues in the area of graphene science, engineering and technology education, as well as research and commercialization.
According to Investing News, the graphene industry reached a market value of $200 million (USD) in 2018, representing a significant 84.8 percent growth in just one calendar year thanks to graphene’s use in many industries, including automotive, mining, and textiles. The focus on industrial development combined with Bryant’s emphasis on the importance of education in preparation for manufacturing during his tenure has enabled the state to possess an ideal climate for rapid growth of graphene-based industry.
Dr. Ed Meek, founder and president of the National Graphene Association, has a vision for Mississippi to be “The Graphene State.” It is already the most affordable state to live in the U.S., due to housing cost, health care and utilities cost all falling well below the national average, according to The Balance Small Business. Potential economic impact of the graphene industry in the state and region provides an exciting atmosphere to kick off this first in a series of regional conferences across the nation.
The National Graphene Association is the main organization and body in the U.S. advocating and promoting the commercialization of graphene. NGA is focused on addressing critical issues such as policy and standards development that will result in effective integration of graphene and graphene-based materials globally. NGA brings together current and future graphene stakeholders — entrepreneurs, companies, researchers, developers and suppliers, investors, venture capitalists, and government agencies — to drive innovation, and to promote and facilitate the commercialization of graphene products and technologies. Join NGA here.