Semiconductor Research Corporation and Intel Foundation Partner to Prepare Future Innovators with Use-Inspired Research Program

Tue Sep 15, 2009 8:00am EDT

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Program Seeks Additional Partners to Produce Next Generation of Scientists,
Engineers
RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C.--(Business Wire)--
Semiconductor Research Corporation (SRC), the world`s leading university
research consortium for semiconductors and related technologies, and Intel
Foundation are partnering on an innovative program that provides science and
engineering undergraduates with valuable, hands-on research experience and
mentoring. 

The Undergraduate Research Opportunities (URO) program, designed to stimulate
and assist the next generation of technology leaders, supports hundreds of
students each year at 14 university campuses nationwide. The SRC and Intel
Foundation are seeking additional partners to expand the program over the coming
year. 

The URO program supports qualified undergraduates interested in physical science
and engineering disciplines in advanced research projects, workshops and other
resources that encourage and enable them to continue their education beyond a
four-year degree. 

"Generating world-class talent in the science and engineering fields is more
vital than ever to a nation`s competitiveness," said Larry Sumney, SRC President
and CEO. "The SRC URO program builds on methodologies that have a proven ability
to attract and retain students and encourage them to pursue advanced degrees." 

"Through use-inspired research and industry connections, the SRC URO program
helps promote undergraduate students into meaningful, productive careers as
innovators and technology leaders," Sumney added. "Challenges to U.S.
competitiveness are causing concern everywhere from Congress and the White House
to company HR managers across the country. SRC is pleased to be part of the
solution." 

SRC URO Graduate: The Program Led to Career in Research

Without his experience in the SRC URO program, Dana Wheeler doubts he would have
embarked on a career in semiconductor research. Wheeler, a post-doctoral
researcher at the Midwest Institute for Nanoelectronics Discovery (MIND) at the
University of Notre Dame, was part of the SRC URO program following his
sophomore year at Notre Dame. He researched silicon tunnel diodes formed using
rapid thermal diffusion and was involved in both the fabrication and
characterization of the devices, gaining exposure to a variety of processing
tools and measurement instruments. 

"Before hearing about the program, it would have never occurred to me that I
could do research as an undergraduate," said Wheeler. "Participating in
undergraduate research made me realize that graduate school and research in the
semiconductor field was the path I should take." 

Wheeler praises the SRC URO program for its ability to acquaint students with
semiconductor research early in their academic careers. 

"The phrase `semiconductor research` can be very intimidating to 19- or
20-year-old students with only a few semesters of engineering classes under
their belts," Wheeler said. "The SRC undergraduate program allows students to
dive right into research and helps them realize that they can make a meaningful
contribution to cutting-edge research in the semiconductor industry." 

A History of Fueling Successful Research

The URO program originally consisted of two distinct tracks, one managed and
funded by the Intel Foundation and the other operated by SRC. Today, the program
is managed by SRC`s Education Alliance, with generous support from the Intel
Foundation. The program has awarded research fellowships to more than 1,000
students and met its key goals of improving student retention, encouraging
advanced education and increasing diversity. More than 95 percent of
participants stayed in science or engineering, nearly 60 percent of graduates
from the program continued to graduate school in science or engineering and 62
percent of program participants were women and/or under-represented minorities.
SRC plans to develop a wider base of corporate support, allowing the program to
reach many more students. 

Universities currently involved in the program include Carnegie Mellon
University, Cornell University, Georgia Institute of Technology, Howard
University, North Carolina A&T, Oregon State University, Portland State
University, Purdue University, University of California at Berkeley, University
of California at Los Angeles, University of Michigan, University of Texas at
Austin, University of Washington and University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.


The SRC URO complements SRC`s existing outstanding advanced degree student
programs, which have helped to educate more than 7,500 students since 1982 and
annually supports 1,500 students at more than 100 universities. In addition to
working on research projects that address the needs of SRC member companies,
students have meaningful interactions with industry scientists and engineers, as
well as with researchers from a broad academic community. 

For information about all of SRC`s student programs go to www.src.org and click
on "Students."

About SRC

Celebrating 27 years of collaborative research for the semiconductor industry,
SRC defines industry needs, invests in and manages the research that gives its
members a competitive advantage in the dynamic global marketplace. Awarded the
National Medal of Technology, America`s highest recognition for contributions to
technology, SRC expands the industry knowledge base and attracts premier
students to help innovate and transfer semiconductor technology to the
commercial industry. For more information, visit www.src.org. 



The Francisco Group for SRC
Dan Francisco, 916-293-9030
dan@franciscogrp.com

Copyright Business Wire 2009

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