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Intel needs workers: Can Ohio colleges and universities train enough?

Central Ohio Technical College is preparing to educate future Intel workers.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Intel has promised that 70% of the workers it plans to hire will have associate engineering degrees.

That's music to the ears of Central Ohio Technical College (COTC) President John Berry who said the school is positioned to train the next Intel worker. Intel has already blessed the way it’s teaching students now.

"We didn't have to create a brand-new degree cycle,” Berry said.

COTC operates four campuses in Newark, Pataskala, Coshocton and Mt. Vernon.

The college said since Intel's announcement in January enrollment has ticked upwards.

According to a spreadsheet provided to 10TV News by COTC, engineering applications for those seeking full associate or short-term degrees have jumped 69% from August of last year.

COTC’s engineering technology program went from eight students last August to 85 this August, a 963% increase.

Credit: COTC
Central Ohio Technical College's application numbers for engineering programs over the past two years.

"When they talk about the first 3,000 individuals that they plan to hire for their first opening of their two fabs, 70% of those will be at the associate degree level," said Berry.

Berry also said there is pressure for the state's colleges and universities to create a career path for students who want to get into the engineering field with the hope of getting hired at Intel.

"Intel has been very good about saying we need an educated workforce," he said.

Meanwhile, places like COTC said they're not trying to get college-ready kids excited about engineering. They want kids just starting school to think about electronics so that they'll be employable the moment they step out of high school.

"Can I walk out of my high school with my associate degree in hand that is viable option that we are working on right now," said Berry.

You can learn more about Central Ohio Technical Colleges degree programs here.

View Intel's employment page here.

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