Youngstown State University and Hon Hai Technology Group (“Foxconn”) announced intentions to establish a partnership to design and launch a national electric vehicle workforce training and innovation centre.
The centre will focus on helping the emerging electric vehicle industry build and scale a sustainable workforce around advanced manufacturing, energy storage and other integrated technology solutions, such as artificial intelligence, 5G and cybersecurity.
The parties intend for the Center to have national reach and to generate a strong economic impact on the region and beyond, YSU President Jim Tressel said.
“Now is the time to break down geographic and institutional silos to provide workforce solutions that accelerate the ability for industry, academia, government and workforce organisations to come together and more quickly deploy resources and strategies to address industry workforce needs,”
YSU and Foxconn will develop short and long-term strategies that includes the training and innovation facility in the area of Lordstown, where Foxconn owns a factory for electric vehicle manufacturing. YSU and Foxconn also intend to execute a formal memorandum of understanding and partnership within the next few months.
“Leveraging Foxconn’s manufacturing strengths, Foxconn will redefine contract design and manufacturing services within the automotive sector,”
said Jerry Hsiao, chief product officer, Foxconn.
“As our centre of gravity for electric vehicle production continues to grow within Ohio, Foxconn is proud to work with academic partners like Youngstown State University to meet the highly-skilled workforce demands of the future.”
The U.S. Department of Energy earlier this year commissioned YSU to conduct a national and regional labour market assessment of the energy storage industry for electric vehicles. Jennifer Oddo, executive director of Workforce Education and Innovation at YSU, said findings strongly suggest the need for a national workforce centre to accelerate the adoption of programmes like registered apprenticeship, stackable industry credentials and new applied learning models that address ever-changing industry needs.
“A national hub will help break down barriers and access to educational programming, create greater awareness of opportunities, and leverage standardised best practices that can be deployed across any geographic footprint,”s