HAN University of Applied Sciences is starting its new Semiconductor Packaging study program in the coming academic year. It is co-developed with the Chip Integration Technology Center (CITC). CITC is the new, Nijmegen-based innovation centre for chip packaging and integration. The program is fulfilling a clear market demand, says Joop Bruines, responsible for establishing the program.
It suits the goals of both parties: life-long learning for employees and developing a whole new skillset.
The higher vocational study program takes five months. There is a minor available for students and a part-time program for people from the business sector. Joop Bruines was deeply involved with the establishment of the program, both on behalf of the HAN as well as the CITC. “It suits the goals of both parties: life-long learning for employees and developing a whole new skillset.”
“This is a brand-new study program. You might say that it is filling a gap in the market”, he continues. “In the world of semiconductors, packaging — the smart casing and integration of chips and functions in one small container — is becoming increasingly more important. The complexity has grown significantly because of developments like 5G and all sorts of integration. Businesses are also increasingly shifting their focus towards packaging. There is a program at the graduate level, but there were no options at the level of higher vocation education. That is why training is largely done internally.”
The plans for this new study program had been knocking around for a while, but at the start of last year things started moving ahead. Bruines: “I got involved with project — on behalf of the CITC — from February 2019 onwards. HAN proposed to establish a part-time program and that was our joint starting point.”
Many businesses were involved with the project from the start, such as NXP, Nexperia and Ampleon. “We held multiple sessions with company experts to discuss the contents of the curriculum.” The program will be highly practically oriented. “Those experts will be teaching approximately ninety percent of all subjects. Once the situation with regards to the coronavirus allows, there will be company visits and practical exercises, and the second part of the program will entirely revolve around working on a large practical assignment in groups. This can be done in businesses, as well as at the CITC.”
They can always lead to other benefits. Apart from this minor, practical assignments at CITC might also be an option.
The collaboration between HAN and CITS is working well for both parties and Bruines believes it will be explored further. “HAN has its Smart Region program and is looking to collaborate with the professional field, and education in chip packaging and integration technology is an important spearhead for CITC. They are clearly an exceptionally good match. HAN generally favours long-term collaborations. They can always lead to other benefits. Apart from this minor, practical assignments at CITC might also be an option.” CITC is also looking to connect with mid-level professional education institutions — like ROC Nijmegen — and SMEs to develop education in different forms.
→ Read more about the program in the Semiconductor Packaging University Program brochure