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Marietta College to partner with ASCENT Ecosytem

Marietta College will serve as a partner institution in the Appalachian Semiconductor Education and Technical (ASCENT) Ecosystem through grant funding awarded by Intel to lead institution Ohio University. The ASCENT program will create an inclusive workforce development and training program to cultivate the next generation of skilled technical professionals for Ohio’s emerging semiconductor industry.

The funding is part of the Intel Semiconductor Education and Research Program for Ohio that was announced today in conjunction with Intel’s groundbreaking ceremony for its leading-edge semiconductor manufacturing plant in New Albany, Ohio.

Over the next three years, ASCENT will collaboratively develop and deliver diverse educational options across the region, including stackable certificates, associate degrees, bachelor’s and graduate degrees that prepare students for career opportunities created by Intel’s arrival to Ohio.

“At Marietta College, this grant will help faculty in Physics, Chemistry, and Engineering collaborate on revising existing majors and developing new programs to prepare students for careers in the growing semiconductor industry. The grant will fund scholarships and internships for students to do mentored research with Marietta College faculty,” said Dr. Dennis Kuhl, Chair of the Physics Department. “ASCENT is a collaboration among different types of institutions, which will provide new opportunities for Marietta College students to gain specialized skills relevant to the semiconductor industry. The collaboration will also seek to make it a natural step for students getting associate degrees at partner institutions in the collaboration to complete bachelor’s degrees here at Marietta.”

The ASCENT program will be led by Ohio University and comprised of a broad coalition of eight other institutions, colleges and technical centers across the southeastern Appalachian region of Ohio. Each will play a vital role in the visualization, delivery and programming of the overall ASCENT Ecosystem.

Eight proposals were selected from leading Ohio institutions, including Ohio University. Each proposal includes collaborative efforts with other higher education institutions, representing more than 80 institutions across the state of Ohio.

In total, the eight leading Ohio institutions will receive $17.7 million in funding over a three-year period.

Intel expects this first iteration of the program to produce nearly 9,000 graduates for the industry and provide more than 2,300 scholarships over three years helping diversify the talent pipeline.

“Intel is excited to be in Ohio, the new Silicon Heartland and home to what will be one of our most sophisticated semiconductor manufacturing plants in the world,” said Jim Evers, Intel Vice President and Ohio General Manager. “Higher education plays a key role in the future success of our industry. We’re proud to support these institutions from every corner of the state as they work to build the workforce of tomorrow.”

Intel’s Semiconductor Education and Research Program for Ohio was announced in March as part of the company’s pledge to invest $100 million in education and research collaborations with universities, community colleges and technical educators in Ohio and across the U.S. The program is designed to help build a pipeline of talent and bolster research programs. Of its $100 million investment, Intel designated $50 million specifically to Ohio colleges and universities.

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