We all enjoy the many benefits of scientific discovery and technological invention in our everyday life, from broadband to healthcare, from driverless cars to artificial intelligence. STEM subjects disrupt more and more the way we work, socialise and communicate. Take a look at your smartphone; the device in your pocket is more powerful than the most advanced supercomputers of the early 1990’s. The systems are becoming ever so complex and innovations are building on and amplifying one another but that wouldn’t be possible without the compound semiconductor materials manufactured and supplied by IQE.
There are huge opportunities for students and young people to work in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics fields as they are being considered one of the accelerating forces for future economic growth across Wales and the UK, from cutting edge innovation to world leading engineering. Young people need to be equipped with the right skills that will enable them to solve real-world problem and to come up with innovative solutions.
IQE actively engages with a number of schools, colleges and universities around the World and is actively promoting and encouraging to take up STEM subjects through a number of initiatives. In the UK, IQE is engaged with STEMNET where IQE STEM Ambassadors participate in a variety of educational events with a particular emphasis on addressing the gender imbalance in engineering disciplines. IQE’s Cardiff facility is participating in a “Business in the Community (BITC)” Programme comprising a number of schools and businesses in a partnership cluster. BITC activities include workshops and competitions with science and technology-based themes.
One of the reasons some young people don’t explore technology, engineering careers path is because there is a misconception that STEM jobs are confined only to academics and do not require creativity. Skills Cymru is a unique opportunity to change their perspectives and to promote our impactful and exciting industry that play a key part in shaping our future. IQE is delighted to be part of the event with the support of ESTnet for the third time. We are committed to developing future talent and preparing young adults for the world of work, to this aim, we participate in numerous careers fairs with local schools and FE facilities.
In addition to IQE, Wales already has a wealth of advanced semiconductor expertise in the form of SPTS (Orbotech), Newport Wafer Fab and Microsemi (a Microchip company), who, along with academic partners and the government funded compound semiconductor applications Catapult, form the World’s first Compound Semiconductor cluster, CSconnected. This fast-growing compound semiconductor cluster is expected to create up to 2,000 highly skilled jobs over the coming years. As part of the CSconnected cluster a CS Academy will be launched to help provide the skills and knowledge that are a feature of the highly skilled jobs that will be created by the cluster through apprenticeships, placements and training.
IQE is the leading global supplier of advanced semiconductor wafers. Our products are found in leading-edge consumer, communication, computing and industrial applications such as smartphone, AI and autonomous cars.