About INSPIRE

Our team is dedicated to establishing an interdisciplinary STEAM framework for workforce development, addressing the significant workforce gap that exists. We recognize the importance of this endeavor in not only meeting critical workforce needs and contributing to a more inclusive and equitable society. To achieve this, we are building an integrated pedagogical platform that is collaboratively developed and driven by STEAM educators, researchers in the field of microelectronics from academia, industry, and national labs, as well as STEAM-focused organizations.

Inclusivity and equity are guiding principles that permeate every aspect of our initiative. We are committed to ensuring that diverse voices are represented and that opportunities for participation and advancement are accessible to all.

Outlined below are the core activities and anticipated outcomes of our effort to create a STEAM framework for workforce development. Additionally, we provide details on our recent accomplishments in this area.

By fostering collaboration and embracing the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion, we aim to shape a robust and comprehensive STEAM framework that addresses workforce needs and propels us toward a more equitable future.

Programs for K12 students and teachers: We have established a strong alliance with K12 students, teachers, school districts, community colleges, and education-focused NGOs within a 60-mile radius of our campus. The purpose of this alliance is to foster closer interaction and engagement, raising awareness about the diverse field of semiconductors, which may be unfamiliar to many K12 communities.

To achieve this, we are organizing camps and workshops both on university and K12 campuses. These events bring together university faculty, non-profit organizations, and industry collaborators to promote the broad areas covered by the CHIPS and Science Acts initiatives. By adopting an interdisciplinary approach, we aim to create engaging content spanning information technology, nanotechnology, quantum computing, artificial intelligence, computer vision, technology policy, climate-resilient agriculture, and more.

Our campus facilities provide an impactful learning environment, including state-of-the-art microfabrication (CNM2) and microscopy labs, engineering student design centers, and innovation labs. We offer hands-on activities such as drone building, augmented and virtual reality applications, superconductor levitation, liquid nitrogen ice cream making, and solar cell fabrication inside a cleanroom. These experiences aim to captivate and inspire K12 students and their teachers.

Through this collaborative effort, we strive to empower and educate the next generation, instilling a passion for STEM fields and equipping them with the knowledge and skills needed for future success.

Developing lecture modules for K12 classrooms: A collaboration has been established between faculties in the fields of science, technology, engineering, art, and math (STEAM) and K12 teachers to develop engaging lecture modules and hands-on projects for K12 classrooms. These modules aim to introduce students to the world of semiconductors, highlight the significance of these industries in society, and showcase the exciting job and research opportunities available in these fields.

To ensure inclusivity and diversity, we have identified underrepresented communities in Sacramento, Oakland, and Stockton - the most diverse town in the USA. Working closely with K12 teachers in these areas, we are implementing these modules in classrooms to inspire students and encourage them to pursue STEM fields, particularly emphasizing the areas covered by the CHIPS and Science Act initiatives.

Furthermore, we are expanding our outreach by preparing and delivering similar lecture modules to 10 additional high schools and community colleges. The goal is to stimulate interest and generate enthusiasm among students in a broader range of microelectronics and related areas.

Through these collaborative efforts, we aim to inspire and empower students from diverse backgrounds to explore and pursue rewarding careers in STEM fields, fostering a new generation of innovators and problem solvers.

K12