California State University Launches Veteran-Friendly Engineering Apprenticeship Program with Stellar Microelectronics


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(December 18, 2008) – To begin meeting the goal of 20,000 new engineers for California's workforce in the next decade, the State of California announced the first apprenticeship program of Gov. Schwarzenegger’s Engineering Initiative. The program, designed for veterans, will begin in 2009.

The program was formed through the collaboration of California State University (CSU); Stellar Microelectronics, Inc.; California State University, Los Angeles; College of the Canyons; and the State of California.

“Many veterans are leaving today’s military service with high-tech skills and unparalleled field experience,” said CSU Chancellor Charles B. Reed. “CSU’s professional science programs will put these men and women to work, and produce the certification and degree they need to be successful.

“These programs align with the needs of California's technology manufacturing industry, helping provide the jobs the state needs in order to emerge from the current economic downturn.”

Stellar Microelectronics, founded by Alfred E. Mann, is an engineering, design, and production services company for electronics products in the biomedical, aerospace and military markets. The announcement was made today in Valencia, California, concurrent with a ribbon-cutting celebrating a new Stellar Microelectronics highly automated manufacturing facility with a current workforce approaching 300 and the potential to increase to 600.

“In this age of economic uncertainty, Stellar is a rapidly growing company that is in a position to provide jobs to talented and experienced people coming out of our armed services,” said Gregory L. Horton, president of Stellar Microelectronics. “Participating in the Governor’s Engineering Initiative is consistent with Stellar’s philosophy and passion to continue to build the finest team in the industry, which allows us to maintain high growth and onshore competitiveness in a global market.

“Veterans who leave active military duty will receive an opportunity to advance their careers through on the job training and education while being employed in a highly technical environment.”

Cal State L.A., in coordination with College of the Canyons, will provide academic direction and support for the apprenticeship program. Consistently rated among the nation’s best schools of its kind by U.S. News & World Report, Cal State L.A.’s College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Technology offers programs in civil, electrical and mechanical engineering; computer science and industrial technology.

“This apprenticeship program is a special opportunity for all of us involved,” said Keith Moo-Young, engineering dean at Cal State L.A. “We enjoy building these types of bridges—bringing new students into engineering, giving them knowledge and experience, and connecting them to professional opportunities. We’re especially excited to help provide these new opportunities to veterans.”


About the California State University
The California State University is the largest system of senior higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, approximately 450,000 students and 46,000 faculty and staff. Since the system was created in 1961, it has awarded nearly 2.5 million degrees, about 90,000 annually. Its mission is to provide high-quality, affordable education to meet the ever-changing needs of the people of California. With its commitment to excellence, diversity and innovation, the CSU is the university system that is working for California.