Lee Jong-ho, Minister of Science and ICT, emphasizes nurturing advanced talents in AI semiconductors

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On the 30th, Minister of Science and ICT Lee Jong-ho held a meeting to foster semiconductor manpower with industry representatives and the president of the Institute of Science and Technology. (Photo = Ministry of Science and ICT)

Minister of Science, Technology and Communication Lee Jong-ho, a semiconductor expert who developed the world’s first three-dimensional (3D) semiconductor device technology, ‘Bulk FinFET’, started training key semiconductor manpower. He held a meeting with industry representatives and the president of the Institute of Science and Technology at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST, KAIST) on the 30th. At this meeting, plans for cooperation in nurturing semiconductor manpower, which had been discussed with the industry and the Institute of Science and Technology, and measures to promote nurturing of semiconductor core manpower through strengthening industry-academic-research cooperation in the future were discussed.

This meeting was prepared to nurture core human resources for semiconductors that are lacking quantitatively and qualitatively through industry-university cooperation with the four major science and technology institutes. At the meeting, Samsung Electronics President Jeong Eun-seung, SK Hynix President Kim Dong-seop, DB Hitech President Hwang Gyu-cheol, Nemesis CEO Wang Seong-ho, KAIST President Lee Kwang-hyeong, Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology (GIST, GIST) President Ki-seon Kim, Daegu Gyeongbuk Institute of Science and Technology (DGIST) President Lee Yong-hoon, Ulsan Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST, UNIST) President, KAIST Professor Kim Jeong-ho, and Semiconductor Display Technology Association President Park Jae-geun were in attendance.

Fostering semiconductor manpower is considered to be the key to boosting competitiveness in the non-memory sector, which has been judged to be weak in the past, beyond Korea as a memory semiconductor powerhouse. The Ministry of Science and ICT is planning to actively utilize the four major science and technology institutes to hold this key.

(From left) Jae-geun Park, President of the Semiconductor Display Technology Association, Dong-seop Kim, President of SK Hynix, Yang Kook, President of DGIST, Ki-seon Kim, President of GIST, Jeong-ho Kim, Professor of KAIST, Eun-seung Jung, President of Samsung Electronics, Jong-ho Lee, Minister of Science and ICT, Kwang-hyung Lee, President of KAIST, Yong-hoon Lee, President of UNIST, Seong-ho Wang, President of Nemesis CEO, Seo-gon Koh, head of the R&D policy department of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Information and Communication, and Gyu-cheol Hwang, president of DB HiTek.  (Photo = Ministry of Science and ICT)
(From left) Jae-geun Park, President of the Semiconductor Display Technology Association, Dong-seop Kim, President of SK Hynix, Yang Kook, President of DGIST, Ki-seon Kim, President of GIST, Jeong-ho Kim, Professor of KAIST, Eun-seung Jung, President of Samsung Electronics, Jong-ho Lee, Minister of Science and ICT, Kwang-hyung Lee, President of KAIST, Yong-hoon Lee, President of UNIST, Seong-ho Wang, President of Nemesis CEO, Seo-gon Koh, head of the R&D policy department of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Information and Communication, and Gyu-cheol Hwang, president of DB HiTek. (Photo = Ministry of Science and ICT)

At this meeting, the Ministry of Science and ICT announced that it would secure a budget for next year to nurture advanced talents in artificial intelligence (AI) semiconductors at the master’s and doctoral level and to nurture working-level manpower in system semiconductors at the bachelor’s level. Through this budget, it plans to operate a separate specialized training course and train 3,140 talents in semiconductor design realization over the next five years.

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It also collaborates with the industry to nurture manpower. In addition to KAIST, which is currently cultivating 100 semiconductor manpower per year, GIST, Digit, and UNIST also decided to introduce the semiconductor contract department to add strength to manpower nurturing. In 2023, GIST plans to train 20 people a year, Digit 50 people a year, and UNIST 30 people a year, and KAIST plans to train 200 people a year.

Industry-university cooperation is also strengthened. To nurture master’s and doctoral level semiconductor experts, KAIST and UNIST will strengthen industry-university cooperation graduate programs. In addition, GIST and Digit plan to review the establishment of a semiconductor graduate school or a semiconductor major. Through this, it is planning to expand the number of semiconductor master’s and doctoral workers from the current 220 to more than 500 within the next five years.

Measures for nurturing practical manpower are also prepared. It plans to hire doctoral-level professors from the industry with extensive practical experience in semiconductor design and process, and expand industry-university cooperation education and research programs. In addition, world-class overseas universities and research institutes, companies and four major science and technology institutes will conduct joint research and human resource exchanges in the semiconductor field.

Currently, KAIST is negotiating with the University of Berkeley for joint research on AI semiconductors and human resource exchange. GIST is in discussions with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) for AI joint research and human resource exchange. Digist is promoting joint research on intelligent semiconductors and human resource exchange with Stanford University.

Based on the opinions gathered at the meeting, the Ministry of Science and ICT plans to actively reflect and promote matters that require government support in the semiconductor support plan to be established in the future. In addition, the Ministry of Science and ICT, semiconductor companies, and the four major science and technology institutes jointly participate in the ‘Semiconductor Human Resource Development Council’ on a regular basis to check the progress of industry-university cooperation and continue to promote new cooperative measures.

Minister of Science and ICT Lee Jong-ho said, “The four major science and technology institutes will lead the industry-academic cooperation talent nurturing model together with the industry to secure key manpower needed by the industry.” (Photo = Ministry of Science and ICT)

Minister Lee Jong-ho said, “The key to securing competitiveness in super-gap semiconductor technology is to nurture high-quality talents with strong foundations and high creativity so that they can be utilized in research and industrial fields. It is very important to nurture human resources through industry-university-research cooperation.” “The four major science and technology institutes will lead the industry-academic cooperation human resource nurturing model together with the industry to actively secure key manpower needed by the industry,” he said.

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Reporter Dongwon Kim of AI Times goodtuna@aitimes.com

[관련기사]”Close cooperation between companies is important to foster the system semiconductor industry”

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