The country that leads in semiconductor innovation will also lead in the transformative technologies that semiconductors enable, from artificial intelligence to autonomous driving. Despite the U.S. industry’s longstanding leadership in semiconductors, continued leadership is not assured. We must invest in our future and the capabilities of our workforce. I am pleased to announce that Micron has joined the White House’s Pledge to America’s Workers. We are adding our strength to ensure that Americans are prepared to succeed in a workplace that is being rapidly transformed by new and evolving technologies.
This is not just a future problem, however. Record low unemployment is adding a new challenge to finding the right workers today. More than 80% of employers are reporting significant difficulty hiring employees with the necessary skills, a gap that some estimate could cost the U.S. $1.2 trillion in lost economic output over the next ten years. This tight job market has us constantly searching for qualified candidates who possess the skills and mindset to be successful. We must significantly invest in increased training and education opportunities for American workers to bridge this gap.
Micron has a long-standing history of supporting robust science and engineering education in our communities. Those foundational education efforts must also be paired with an aggressive plan to upskill our workforce to ensure we continue to lead the semiconductor industry.
Our commitment will provide for 10,000 enhanced career and learning opportunities for U.S. workers. Through a combination of enhanced digital learning, upskilling and expanded support of continuing education, Micron’s existing workforce will continue to advance their relevant professional skills.
Micron is also committing to an extensive community investment. We are partnering with institutions of higher learning to advance professional and technical training for our team members as well as future employees, ensuring the pipeline of STEM workers is adequate for the future. We will invest approximately $10 million over the next five years, divided between two primary efforts:
- Partnering with educational institutions to implement new professional and technical programs
- Creating a new scholarship program that ensures higher education is within reach for more students from underserved populations
I have always believed that the strength of a company’s team and culture is the only lasting competitive advantage it has. With these investments, we seek to develop our capability and create new opportunities for professional development. I look forward to seeing our community investments strengthen the competitiveness of American workers.