Governor Katie Hobbs Announces First Ever Semiconductor Registered Apprenticeship Program in Arizona

Published by The Bee News

November 17, 2023

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Phoenix, AZ – November 16th, Governor Katie Hobbs announced the first ever registered apprenticeship program supporting the semiconductor industry in Arizona in collaboration with NXP Semiconductors, and $4 million to support semiconductor apprentices. Additionally, she announced the creation of a new semiconductor-focused Future48 workforce accelerator in collaboration with Maricopa Community College.

Working closely with the State Apprenticeship Office, NXP in Chandler will soon offer apprenticeships for industrial manufacturing technicians, previously Mo.

“Today’s announcement will ensure Arizona fully realizes its potential to be the hub of America’s semiconductor industry,” said Governor Katie Hobbs. “The advanced manufacturing industry brings with it good paying jobs, and we are going to make sure every Arizonan has the opportunity to reap the benefits of our economic growth. Apprenticeship programs are one of the best ways to connect people to the possibilities, and I am proud to bring government, industry, and education leaders together to build an Arizona for everyone.”

“As the world enters a new era of semiconductor manufacturing, Arizona remains an important focal point for the production of next-generation technology and the demand for skilled workers has never been more essential,” said Jason Conrad, Senior Director of Operations, ECHO Fab at NXP Semiconductors. “NXP has called Arizona home for more than 70 years, and applauds workforce training programs like the Registered Apprenticeship Program, which help foster a new generation of local technical and engineering talent. We are excited to partner with the Hobbs administration, Arizona Commerce Authority and local higher education institutions around workforce training.”

“These programs will provide a turbo boost to Arizona’s already robust semiconductor talent pipeline, creating more opportunities for Arizonans to receive hands-on training in this high-wage field,” said Arizona Commerce Authority President and CEO Sandra Watson. “We’re especially excited for the launch of the Future48 Workforce Accelerator for semiconductors in conjunction with Maricopa Community Colleges and the establishment of Arizona’s first ever semiconductor Registered Apprenticeship Program – two programs that will amplify our ability to scale semiconductor talent quickly. My thanks to Governor Hobbs, NXP, MCCCD Chancellor Gonzalez and all the partners on today’s announcements for their leadership and collaboration to strengthen our semiconductor ecosystem.”

“Today, we continue to build growth in apprenticeships, ensuring accessibility for all Arizonans,” said Office of Economic Opportunity CEO Carlos Contraras. “We will meet more and more Arizonans who are better off because of this work. The semiconductor technician workforce program we are introducing today is built upon the effective model of registered apprenticeships. This approach allows participants to acquire new skills, kickstart a career, earn a salary, and support themselves and their families. Thank you to all the semiconductor companies for your investment in Arizona and its people. With Governor’s Hobb’s leadership, we will keep working together to build a stronger Arizona.”

“The Registered Apprenticeship Program at the Department of Economic Security is ready to help working in partnership with employers and training providers,” said Department of Economic Security CEO Angie Rodgers. “We’ve grown from seven supported industries to fifteen, and we’re thrilled with the announcement to add the semiconductor industry to this list. We’re here to help make the magic happen by connecting an eager workforce with employment and training opportunities to be successful.”

“I’d like to thank Governor Hobbs and the state agency partners for highlighting the need for child care as part of the semiconductor industry in Arizona and our economy,” said First Things First CEO Melinda Morrison Gulick. “Childcare is an urgent economic priority at every level. It allows parents to go to work, businesses to hire workers, and it’s an investment in our kids’ futures. The childcare industry holds up every economic sector of our economy. The [Child Care Needs] Study will be useful in our state’s efforts to help our semiconductor industry to secure CHIP funding, and it can also be used for other industries in our state.”

Additionally, Governor Hobbs announced:

  • 8 additional full time staff at the Department of Economic Security’s Arizona Apprenticeship Office;
  • The creation of an “Employer Collaborative” that will connect industry to government and facilitate the apprenticeship registration process as part of ACA’s Semiconductor Task Force;
  • A Childcare Needs Study, which will be conducted by the Arizona Commerce Authority, in partnership with DES, First Things First and the child care community to ensure having children is not a barrier to employment.

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