What Research Universities Need to Know About The CHIPS and Science Act
On February 23, Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo spoke at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service outlined the long-term vision of the CHIPS for America program. Secretary Raimondo said that within a decade, the Federal investments made by the administration would help the U.S. accomplish several goals.
CHIPS Goal #1 Establish at least two new large-scale clusters of leading-edge logic fabs
Each cluster will have a robust supplier ecosystem, R&D facilities, and specialized infrastructure that will support 10k+ workers per cluster ranging from high school graduates to PhD holders. These clusters will include multiple high-volume advanced packaging facilities.
CHIPS Goal #2 Create a robust R&D ecosystem
The Department of Commerce will invest up to $11 billion to establish a semiconductor R&D ecosystem across the nation, primarily through the standing up of the National Semiconductor Technology Center (NSTC). The NSTC will be a public-private partnership network of centers around the country working together to address the semiconductor ecosystem’s biggest challenges, including lowering barriers to entry for small companies and start-ups.
CHIPS Goal #3 Doubling the semiconductor workforce
Raimondo called on colleges and universities to triple the number of graduates in semiconductor related fields, including engineering, within a decade. Universities must expand recruitment pipelines to bring more women, people of color, veterans, and members of underserved communities into the field who can get degrees and launch careers in industry. She also called on universities to make several changes including partnering with industry to align programs to the needs of semiconductor jobs and offering credit for work experience. The Secretary also called on industry to work with community colleges and high schools to train 100k new technicians in the next decade through creative apprenticeships, career and technical education, and career programs.
The Department of Commerce will release its first funding opportunity from the CHIPS program next week (focusing on manufacturing) and plans to release additional opportunities in supply-chain and R&D in the coming months
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