Florida Construction News staff writer
Governor Ron DeSantis has proposed an $80 million investment for the University of Florida’s Florida Semiconductor Institute (FSI) in the upcoming 2024 legislative session.
“Industries like semiconductor manufacturing and advanced packaging support our national security and create economic opportunities in our state,” DeSantis said at a news conference. “The investments we are making today ensure that our students have access to high-wage, high-demand jobs without going into debt, while supporting sustainable economic development in Florida.”
Florida has the 5th largest workforce in semiconductors and is taking a lead in next-generation chips including ‘specialty electronics’ used for space, defense, and consumer electronics.
‘We are preparing a strategic plan for Florida to guide semiconductor R&D and create handshakes to upscale technology into Florida’s chips manufacturing ecosystem and beyond.”, said Volker J. Sorger, director Florida Semiconductor Institute at the University of Florida.
DeSantis emphasized the critical role played by industries like semiconductor manufacturing and advanced packaging in fortifying national security and creating economic opportunities within the state. The proposed $80 million for FSI aims to position Florida at the forefront of semiconductor innovation, driving cutting-edge research and cultivating a highly skilled workforce.
Investments in semiconductor manufacturing and advanced packaging across the state over the last two years focused on developing Florida’s semiconductor-related talent pipeline. They include:
- $35 million grant through the Florida Department of Education’s Workforce Capitalization Incentive Grant Program for high schools, technical colleges and state colleges.
- $28 million investment in NeoCity, Valencia College, Santa Fe College, Eastern Florida State College and Lake Technical College.
“The Governor’s $380 million total investment in the semiconductor industry stands as a shining example of Florida’s leadership in workforce education,” said Commissioner of Education Manny Diaz, Jr. “In Florida, we are ensuring that our students are well-prepared to join dynamic industries like semiconductor manufacturing so they can contribute to the growth of our great state.”