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Syracuse University Joins Network of Institutions to Help Build Semiconductor Workforce
Earlier this week, Syracuse University hosted officials with Micron Technology Inc. and the National Science Foundation, along with U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer, for the announcement of a partnership of leading universities that will focus on developing the next generation of the U.S. semiconductor industry’s workforce.
The University will be one of 21 institutions as part of the Northeast University Semiconductor Network that will form a training pipeline to build the future of the semiconductor industry in Central New York.
Micron Technology made a historic announcement in October to create a proposed $100 billion semiconductor fabrication facility in the town of Clay, New York. The plant is expected to increase the domestic supply of leading-edge memory and create nearly 50,000 New York jobs, including approximately 9,000 Micron jobs, with Syracuse playing a key role in training this workforce of the future.
During the event on Monday, Schumer and Sethuraman Panchanathan, director of the National Science Foundation (NSF), joined Micron executives as they revealed the new network and the publication of a Dear Colleague Letter (DCL). The DCL opens two NSF solicitations and follows a previously announced partnership between Micron and NSF to support future workforce development efforts at institutions of higher education, aligned with the strategic vision laid out in the CHIPS and Science Act.
“Alongside government partners, Micron is taking bold action to cultivate and support collaboration between institutions of higher education to develop a diverse and robust STEM talent pipeline—a model that we look forward to advancing in other regions,” said Sanjay Mehrotra, Micron’s president and CEO. “By uniting institutions across the Northeast, we can further develop the talent needed to produce leading-edge memory at Micron’s massive scale here in New York. U.S. technology leadership and the future of the American semiconductor industry depend on the development of a diverse, highly skilled workforce that is fully prepared to excel in tomorrow’s STEM careers.”
Also on Monday, Micron facilitated two roundtable discussions with representatives from the region’s technician, apprenticeship and community colleges as well as four-year institutions at the National Veterans Resource Center at the Daniel and Gayle D’Aniello Building,
Combining the reach of traditional and nontraditional pathways into the semiconductor industry, the Northeast University Semiconductor Network will expand and prepare the next generation of talent through a framework centered on collaboration, innovation and problem solving.
Micron, in partnership with the network institutions, will champion efforts to modernize and enhance curriculum by sharing industry-backed technical content, expanding experiential learning programs for greater access to cleanrooms and teaching labs, and bolstering research opportunities for students. In all these efforts, the Northeast University Semiconductor Network will work to reach more underrepresented students.
The NSF solicitation is the next step in the partnership between the Micron Foundation and NSF to jointly invest $10 million to fund and develop semiconductor curricula in colleges and universities across the country. ExLENT: Experiential Learning for Emerging and Novel Technologies supports inclusive experiential learning opportunities designed to give learners the skills needed to succeed in STEM and strengthen the semiconductor workforce, while IUSE: Improving Undergraduate STEM Education supports projects to improve STEM teaching and learning for undergraduate students.
“Now that Central New York has landed the largest investment in U.S. history, it’s all-hands-on-deck to prepare a new generation of workers to fill the tens of thousands of new construction, manufacturing and innovation jobs that Micron’s $100 billion project will create in Syracuse and across Upstate New York,” said Sen. Schumer.
“Syracuse University is proud to partner with Micron to advance this once-in-a-generation investment here in the Central New York Community,” said Chancellor and President Kent Syverud. “The Northeast University Semiconductor Network will cultivate collaboration to unlock new opportunities for educators and students in the semiconductor industry. Together with our fellow Northeast universities and colleges, we will develop the workforce of the future, strengthening our region’s and our country’s position as a leader in manufacturing and technology.”
Other founding partners in the Northeast University Semiconductor Network include the entire State University of New York and City University of New York systems, Brown University, Carnegie Mellon University, Clarkson University, Columbia University, Cornell University, Harvard University, Hofstra University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, New York University, Penn State University, Princeton University, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Rochester Institute of Technology, University of Maryland, Baltimore County, University of Pennsylvania, University of Rochester, University of Virginia and Virginia Tech.