MOST preps trainees for Silicon Valley talent cultivation project

The Ministry of Science and Technology kicked off May 10 a three-day training camp for participants in its Learn, Explore, Aspire, Pioneer project, a talent cultivation initiative offering 50 Taiwan doctorate holders the opportunity to conduct cutting-edge industrial technology R&D in Silicon Valley for one year.

Designed to prepare participants ahead of their August departure for the U.S., the training camp comprises case study presentations, exchange activities with Silicon Valley professionals and seminars by tech industry experts. Invited speakers include Bruce Chen, founder and CEO of payment platform INSTO; Jesse Chen, co-founder of startup investment firm Maton Venture; and Luba Tang, founder and CEO of software solutions developer Skymizer Inc.

Speaking at the launch of the camp in northern Taiwan's Taoyuan City, MOST Minister Chen Liang-gee said that the LEAP initiative will foster domestic innovation by helping top local talents establish professional networks in the U.S. and learn about emerging trends in key sectors like green energy, information and communication technology and smart machinery.

According to the ministry, some 37 international enterprises based in Silicon Valley have offered more than 100 research and cross-sector training opportunities under the LEAP project. Participating companies include semiconductor firms Applied Materials Inc. and Intel Corp. as well as graphics chipmaker Nvidia Corp.

To ensure the doctorate holders get the most from their experience, the ministry has also arranged a group of mentors in Silicon Valley who will be on hand to offer guidance on cultural, entrepreneurial and innovative trends in the global tech hub. Upon returning to Taiwan, participants will be invited to share their experience with local academics and tech sector workers through MOST-organized exchange programs.

Launched in February by the ministry's Science and Technology Policy Research and Information Center, the LEAP program is among a number of government initiatives designed to strengthen the nation's high-tech talent pool. In April, the ministry unveiled Leaders in Future Trends, an incentives-based project aimed at encouraging top Taiwan doctorate holders who were awarded their degrees in the fields of science and technology by foreign universities to return home from abroad and share their knowledge and expertise.

These measures are in line with President Tsai Ing-wen's five-plus-two innovative industries initiative, a comprehensive economic restructuring program promoting the biotech and pharmaceuticals, green energy, national defense, smart machinery and Internet of Things sectors, as well as the circular economy and a new paradigm for agricultural development.

Source: Radio Taiwan International