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Rep. Suzanne Bonamici tours Willow Creek Center, talks semiconductors

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Jobs were the topic of discussion – specifically, jobs in the Portland area’s booming semiconductor industry – when U.S. Rep. Suzanne Bonamici visited Portland Community College’s Willow Creek Center in Hillsboro on June 6. Bonamici toured the facility, which features a training lab for students in PCC’s Microelectronics Technology Program, and took part in a roundtable discussion that included PCC students, faculty, and staff, along with representatives from local government, area semiconductor manufacturers, the K-12 education system  and community partners. 

PCC’s Semiconductor Manufacturing Workforce Initiative has been chosen as one of only 15 community project funding that Congresswoman Bonamici has submitted for federal funding in 2023. 

PCC President Mark Mitsui, left, and U.S. Rep. Suzanne Bonamici tour the semiconductor manufacturing lab at PCC's Willow Creek Center.

PCC President Mark Mitsui, left, and U.S. Rep. Suzanne Bonamici tour the semiconductor manufacturing lab at PCC’s Willow Creek Center.

“Students in the program will have a pathway to high-demand, good-paying jobs in the semiconductor industry, with the support they need to thrive during their training,” Rep. Bonamici said. “As the pandemic has made clear, we need to improve our domestic semiconductor supply chain. I was glad to join PCC to discuss how we can support semiconductor training programs and increase U.S. manufacturing.”

Based on strong partnerships with semiconductor manufacturers, such as Intel, microelectronics has established a solid record of placing students in good-paying jobs with opportunities for advancement. If passed, this project championed by the Congresswoman would enable the program to increase capacity, bolster wraparound support services for students, and keep its equipment and facilities at the cutting edge.

PCC President Mark Mitsui underscored the importance of public-private partnerships in the success of not just the Microelectronics Technology program, but of workforce development efforts across the region.

“Thanks to the leadership of Congresswoman Bonamici and through our partnerships with Intel and others, we’ve seen what can happen through public and private sector collaborations,” Mitsui said. “This is how we close the equity gap and build a more prosperous future for all Oregonians.”

To learn more about the Microelectronics program at PCC, visit https://www.pcc.edu/programs/microelectronics/