Lorain County Community College will partner with colleges and universities in Ohio, Michigan and Indiana to form the Midwest Regional Network to meet national semiconductor and microelectronics needs.
The network will collaboratively develop innovative solutions in higher education to best support the relocation of the advanced semiconductor and microelectronics industry and meet the research and labor needs of the industries.
The network was formed in part due to Intel Corporation’s recent decision to build its most advanced chip manufacturing facility in Ohio and respond to broader national efforts to promote American leadership in semi- conductors and microelectronics.
“It’s more than just one company coming to Ohio; this is an industry embedding itself in the Midwest with the potential to create a Silicon Heartland here,” said Lorain County Community College President Marcia J. Ballinger, Ph.D. “Through a decade preparation, LCCC has become a comprehensive community college nationally recognized for its innovative workforce programs specializing in semiconductors, microelectromechanical systems, and microelectronics manufacturing.
“And the collaborative approach of this network, where each institution brings its own niche strength within this global industry, will ensure that we all capitalize on the opportunities ahead.”
Joining LCCC in the new network are: Case Western Reserve University, Columbus State Community College, Michigan State University, Ohio State University, Purdue University, Sinclair Community College, University of Cincinnati, University of Dayton, University of Michigan, University of Notre Dame and Wright State University.
The presidents of each establishment recently signed a memorandum of understanding to form this network which is intended to be open and should develop beyond these initial establishments.
Partner institutions will leverage existing research, curricular and experiential learning assets in the region to fuel the national growth of robust innovation and supply chain ecosystems in semiconductors and microelectronics
“In this age of rapid innovation and change, companies need not only well-trained but also experienced talent,” Ballinger said. “Lorain County Community College has become a leader in the development and integration of hands-on learning and training programs in partnership with regional businesses.
“And as the supply chain swells as the semiconductor industry takes root in Ohio, our industry partnerships will grow and our students in the program, who already have a placement rate 100% upon graduation, will reap the benefits.”
The LCCC also provides the university network with access to 100,000 square feet of education and training facility, including 100, 1000 and 10,000 class clean rooms, as well as an established curriculum through its training certificate short-term, its one-year certificate, associate’s degree, and applied bachelor’s degree. study programs in micro-electromechanical systems and intelligent industrial automation.
The network’s initial activities include:
• Develop a common and secure information-sharing platform to facilitate the identification of expertise, equipment, facilities and study programs of interest in order to facilitate joint programming, research and awareness initiatives across the network.
• Encourage regional collaborations and promote workshops around fundraising opportunities that will increase regional capacity to address identified needs in the semiconductor and microelectronics ecosystems.
• Develop pilot mechanisms to link existing research, facilities and curricular/training assets in the region to optimize their use to meet regional needs and opportunities.
“By uniting our efforts across the Midwest and working together to meet the labor and innovation demands that will surely arise from advances in the semiconductor industry, we can amplify the impact within local communities,” Ballinger said.