Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said the U.S. needs a “solid partnership” between top universities and private industry to bolster domestic semiconductor manufacturing capabilities.
We really have to take it more seriously and develop new pipelines,” Ms. Raimondo said. “It is predicted that if we don’t do things differently, we will be short of about 100,000 semiconductor technicians in the next few years. This is a big problem. This is also an opportunity. “
Ms. Raimondo, speaking at an event in Washington organized by Purdue University and industry groups, highlighted federal investment in the semiconductor industry. Ms. Raimondo’s department has spearheaded an estimated $52 billion investment in the U.S. semiconductor industry, which she views as a critical national security resource.
In order to enhance the technological competitiveness of the United States, the United States promulgated the “Chip and Science Act” last year to promote the development of semiconductor manufacturing centers across the United States and maintain the United States’ technological advantages while responding to challenges from China.
The Biden administration began applying for some funding under the bill in late February. Congress passed the law last year after pandemic lockdowns and supply chain disruptions exposed U.S. reliance on chips from Asia, especially Taiwan, a frequent target of Beijing’s threats.
Approximately one hundred representatives from across the industry attended the event, including Thomas Sonderman, president and CEO of SkyWater Technology, as well as executives from Micron Technology, Intel and Applied Materials. Much of the discussion was about the need to train workers to meet new demands.
“Frankly, our biggest concern is workforce development,” Mr Sandman said. “If none of us are as excited as we are when we join the industry, then it won’t be successful.”