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Posted On:
November 17, 2023
at 1:47 pm

Author:
Claire Conway

Category:
Advanced Manufacturing, Blog, Education, grants, STEM Community Development

onsemi Awards $1.3M in STEAM Grants

Last week, the United States celebrated National STEM/STEAM Day, which encourages children to explore their interests in science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics. This is a great time for us to explain why STEAM is so important to onsemi.

With demand for semiconductors projected to increase significantly by 2030 and beyond, chip manufacturers are ramping up innovation and production globally. Meanwhile, the U.S. CHIPS and Science Act of 2022 has set the stage for a semiconductor boom within the United States. It brings with it a critical challenge – the need for thousands of skilled engineers and technicians to support this growth. In the U.S., there is a projected shortage of 67,000 workers in the semiconductor industry by 2030, making it essential that we equip current and next generations with the interdisciplinary tools they require to succeed professionally, that companies rely on to stay competitive, and that the world needs to solve the most challenging problems.

onsemi leverages a part of its corporate, “Giving Now” philanthropy program, to help students in underserved communities achieve their dreams through STEAM education grants. This year, the ON Semiconductor Foundation awarded 41 grants for a total of $1,360,000. The seven strategic grantees below are focused on increasing semiconductor awareness at the middle school juncture. This is a critical age as significant declines in STEAM ability beliefs and interest are often found during the transitions to middle school and high school [1].

  1. IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) Foundation: Two-year grant that helps develop, evaluate and deploy an interconnected suite of high-quality, relevant and engaging professional development and curriculum resources to help teachers of students ages 10 to 14 get excited about semiconductor technology and careers.
  2. FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics: One-year grant funding FIRST’s equity, diversity and inclusion initiatives, which aims to increase diversity such that their audience reflects the population of the communities they serve.
  3. Science Buddies: One-year grant supporting a new, hands-on curriculum around “Exploring Semiconductors” to help students understand the role of semiconductors.
  4. Arizona Technology Council Foundation, DBA SciTech Institute: One-year grant supporting a national STEM Youth Congress Conference.
  5. Project Lead the Way (PLTW): Two-year grant allowing middle schools to implement or expand PLTW Gateway curricular offerings.
  6. Girlstart: One-year grant allowing Girlstart (a national female-led organization based in Texas that offers out-of-school STEM programming to girls grades 4-8 for free) to increase the number of after-school clubs offered for spring 2024; reach more families through community STEM programming; and serve 900 girls through summer camps.
  7. Girls Scouts Arizona Cactus Pine Council (GSACPC): One-year grant to help support a new mobile building space for experiential learning. By adding solar power to the vehicle, it will not only be more sustainable but also provide a way for girls to see up close how solar power works.

Investing in STEAM Education Throughout all School Levels

onsemi invests in STEAM programs in communities where onsemi employees work and live in across the globe. Programs are available for all stages of education, starting with primary school, through middle, secondary, and vocational school, up to tertiary education levels. For example:

  • Through the LearningWorks program, onsemi is supporting primary school children providing tutoring, mentoring and alternative education opportunities designed to ensure the success of learners whose needs are not met by traditional systems.
  • In collaboration with the Dutchess Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) in New York, onsemi employees volunteer at science fairs and support career day opportunities to help prepare students for life in the workforce or the pursuit of 2- or 4-year degrees.
  • In support of the Dutchess Community College’s (DCC) development of the State University of New York (SUNY) Future of Work Center to create credential programs that address employer skill needs and prepare job seekers, onsemi assisted with lab equipment selection, guest lectures and tours.
  • onsemi’s research collaboration with Penn State will provide an annual $800k investment over the next 10 years to support the cutting-edge research of top academics and doctoral candidates in silicon carbide crystal growth.

To truly address the impending semiconductor labor shortage, it will require a collaborative public and private effort across the entire technology industry working with the government and educational institutions to make a meaningful impact. onsemi is doing its part through investments, employee volunteerism and donation matching to foster a passion and interest in STEAM education. It’s a critical factor to shaping a future that is innovative, inclusive, sustainable and equipping us to solve some of the world’s greatest challenges.

Learn more about onsemi’s efforts and become part of the change:

[1] Barth, J. and Masters, S.; Effects_of_Classroom_Quality_Gender_Stereotypes_and_Efficacy_on_Math_and_Science_Interest_over_School_Transitions, April 2020

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