"Improving quality, increasing quantity" of human resources in the semiconductor industry

VCN - Customs Magazine reporter interviewed Associate Professor, Dr. Nguyen Thu Thuy, Director of the Department of Higher Education (Ministry of Education and Training).
Further efforts needed to solve human resources shortage for semiconductor industry: Experts Further efforts needed to solve human resources shortage for semiconductor industry: Experts
Investing in wages is investing in development Investing in wages is investing in development
Associate Professor, Dr. Nguyen Thu Thuy, Director of the Department of Higher Education (Ministry of Education and Training).

Recently, many groups of high-tech enterprises and semiconductor enterprises from developed countries such as Japan, Korea, and the United States have sought investment opportunities in Vietnam. The semiconductor chip industry in Vietnam faces great opportunities for development. Could you please tell us about the current status of Vietnam's high-quality human resources and the needs in the near future?

There are currently over 50 large FDI enterprises investing in Vietnam in the microelectronics and semiconductor industry, of which the field of IC design requires the most high-quality human resources. In fact, this market had demand but it was fragmented and had potential, so attracting human resources was not simple. It is not easy to attract students to study STEM fields (4 majors: Science - Science, Technology - Technology, Engineering - Engineering and Mathematic - Mathematics), high-tech field. Meanwhile, the total demand for human resources in this field is forecast by some economic experts (Fullbright University) in the next 5 years to be about 20,000 people and in the next 10 years about 50,000 people with university degrees or higher. Currently, the number of IC design human resources is about 5,000 people from technical universities, the training need in the next few years is about 3,000 people/year, of which the number of postgraduate graduates accounts for at least 30. % (including level 7 engineers, masters, and doctors).

In recent years, Vietnam has had policies and communications to encourage higher education institutions to expand and develop STEM training majors, focusing on industries in the field of information and communication technology. information technology (ICT), industries serving human resources in the 4.0 industrial revolution, AI, Bigdata...

During the period 2019 - 2022, the number of new STEM university student enrollments increases by an average of 10% per year, higher than the overall growth rate of 6.5%. The three fields with the strongest average annual growth are Computer and information technology (17.1%), Engineering Technology (10.6%). It is clear that we have begun to have direction and more and more good candidates are starting to come to this field. This is a very good signal.

As for universities, Vietnam's leading engineering and technology universities are relatively ready in terms of training capacity to meet human resource requirements in the field of semiconductors and microchips. Accordingly, human resources for research, development and production of semiconductor materials have training majors in chemistry, physics, materials... Human resources for IC design and production have appropriate training majors. especially electronic engineering, electronics-telecommunications; Nearby industries include electrical engineering, control and automation, mechatronics,...

Training can recruit new training from the beginning, or students studying nearby majors can switch to specialized study in the last 1-2 years; Or engineers who have graduated from nearby fields can take additional training courses from a few months to 1-2 years to meet the requirements of the semiconductor - IC field.

Statistics from the Ministry of Education and Training show that the number of newly recruited university students and graduates in appropriate majors (need to adjust the training program to add 1-2 semesters), close majors (need to study conversion, additional 2-3 semesters) as follows: Suitable majors (electronics-telecommunications, microelectronics...): new recruits about 6,000 and graduates about 5,000/ year (average increase of 7%/year). Nearby majors (electrical, mechatronics, automation, computer engineering...): new recruits about 15,000 and graduates about 13,000/year (an average increase of 10%/year). Thus, if 30% of students in suitable majors and 10% of nearby majors major in semiconductor circuits, the number of 3,000 graduates/year is feasible.Công nhân sản xuất linh kiện điện tử.  Ảnh minh hoạ: TTXVN

Workers manufacturing electronic components. Illustration photo: TTXVN

There is a lot of potential, high-quality human resources are quite small. What is the reason?

Because the labor market in the field of semiconductors and microchips is just beginning to form, mainly in the form of potential, the biggest challenge is how to attract students to study these majors and improve quality. training, meeting the strict requirements of foreign businesses. This requires synchronous support policies from the State.

According to you, to encourage and attract learners, increase the quantity and quality of high-quality human resources to meet Vietnam's needs, what solutions should be implemented in the coming time?

There are three proposed policy groups by the Ministry of Education and Training. Specifically, the first is a group of policies to support and encourage learners to improve the quantity and quality of input enrollment (including enrollment in specialized training programs and conversion training programs). That is the policy of scholarships, tuition exemptions, preferential credits... especially to attract at least 1,000 students to pursue graduate studies (currently the rate of graduate studies in these fields is only about 4%). The second is a group of support policies and breakthrough investments to enhance training and research capacity, first of all the capacity of lecturers, laboratory equipment, practice software tools, experiments and simulation. Third is a group of policies to encourage and promote cooperation between universities - research institutes - domestic and foreign enterprises, especially with partner universities and enterprises (with investment potential in Vietnam).

However, the Ministry of Education and Training alone will not be able to solve all problems related to human resource training, but it is necessary for relevant ministries, branches and localities to have policies to encourage the attraction of human resources. good human resources. Besides, there is a need for cooperation between universities, research institutes and businesses.

In particular, research institutes are a bridge to promote research and innovation. At the same time, working with universities to bring new knowledge into human resource training.

We think these groundbreaking policies will meet the needs and forecasts we have set. Relying on the current capacity of the system will not be enough to meet human resource needs in the next ten years.

Thank you!

By Tuan Phong/ Quynh Lan

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