Intel Co. is building up its talent pool and its production capacity. On September 9, Intel officially broke ground on its planned $20 billion semiconductor manufacturing complex in central Ohio and announced more investments, some in partnership with the National Science Foundation, to train and encourage education in semiconductor manufacturing and design.
In a groundbreaking ceremony Friday morning, Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger called the under-construction chip fab a herald of the “Silicon Heartland.” President Biden, who pushed for the summer passage of the CHIPs and Science Act passed this summer, which included $52 billion in tax credits for companies building semiconductor plants in the United States, also spoke on Ohio's history in manufacturing. State government officials, including governor Mike DeWine and Senator Sherrod Brown attended and commended Intel’s decision to build the factory in Licking County, Ohio, not far from the state capital Columbus.
Construction of the new factory begins as Intel is also preparing to cultivate a local talent pool to help staff it and other fabricator locations around the country. In addition to the groundbreaking, Intel said Friday it would spend $17.7 million in its “first phase” of STEM education investments in Ohio on eight projects from different research institutions.
The $17.7 million is part of a promised $50 million Intel plans to spend on similar projects in Ohio alongside an additional $50 million it plans to spend at other locations around the country. In a joint statement September 8, The U.S. National Science Foundation and Intel promised to spend $10 million on improving higher education programs in STEM across the United States.
According to a statement from the NSF, the $10 million announced in investments by it and Intel Thursday will go towards projects improving STEM programs at higher education institutions selected through the NSF’s Advanced Technological Education and its Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineer, and Mathematics programs. The Intel/NSF agreement is a 10-year program that could lead to $100 million in education investment throughout the next decade.
In October, Intel will discuss how its semiconductor manufacturing process at IndustryWeek’s Manufacturing & Technology Show, held in Cleveland from October 18-20.