SEMI HTU Students Go Green in June
High Tech U, a program to encourage high school students to pursue careers in science and technology, recently expanded their curricula to include advanced clean technologies, including solar and nanotechnology. Held at San Jose State University in San Jose, California on June 26–28, thirty students attending High Tech U (HTU) learned how to turn silicon wafers into environmentally-friendly solar cells designed to produce clean, non-polluting and sustainable energy.
The program was co-sponsored by Applied Materials, which will be debuting new green innovations at this year’s SEMICON® West. Company representatives were on hand to give students an overview of its role in the development and production of solar photovoltaic equipment and technologies.
The green session was incorporated as part of a program that shows kids how taking courses in math and science can open doors to many rewarding career opportunities in high tech.
“This generation of students will be key in addressing, and solving, many of the planet’s most pressing environmental challenges,” said Lisa Anderson, vice president of the SEMI Foundation. “Our main purpose with HTU is to instill a deep-rooted interest in high tech, and provide students with the tools they need to successfully take the next step toward math and science-based careers.”
June was a busy month for the SEMI Foundation in Silicon Valley, as it organized the 56th and 57th HTU programs back-to-back, reaching nearly 70 South Bay students representing 18 area high schools. With the dedicated participation of employees from hosting sponsors, Applied Materials, Intel and Lam Research, the programs delivered nearly 60 hours of instruction. Additional instructors and mentors came from the SEMI Global Headquarters, Aviza, EKC Dupont, Oak Valley Consulting, Mattson, and Infrastructure Advisors. Additional funding and support came from the Global Sustaining Sponsor, Air Products.
During the three-day program, students learned about the design and physics of solar cells, and gained hands-on experience in creating solar cells on silicon wafers, a process very similar to semiconductor manufacturing. The student participants learned how solar circuitry collects voltage, and how to use cutting-edge equipment. They measured solar voltage levels while recording measurements into a computer software program for further analysis.
High Tech U, now in its sixth year, has reached well over 30,000 high school students and several hundred teachers with its groundbreaking curriculum. For more information about the SEMI Foundation and HTU, visit www.semi.org/foundation.