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Texas Instruments enhances Tech's
analog engineering program

$2.2M gift among largest in ECE history

Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) is continuing its long-time partnership with Georgia Tech's School of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) by providing a donation of $2.2 million to create the TI Graduate Fellows Program in Analog Integrated Circuit Design. The cash gift, among the largest in the history of ECE, also will add a faculty position and more laboratory equipment.

Over a five-year period, the TI Graduate Fellows Program will support 60 master's and doctoral fellows in analog microelectronics. Texas Instruments and other U.S. high-tech companies are facing a shortage of well-trained analog engineers. These electrical engineers possess design, analysis and production skills in the broad area of analog integrated circuits, which focus on the processing of signals from the real world, like light, sound and temperature. While more and more electronic equipment operates digitally, analog technology is necessary to process real-world, non-numeric information, such as the sound of a voice on a wireless phone call. Forecasts indicate that without such efforts the analog shortage will become even more severe as wireless, optical communications and other such technologies grow in market importance.

"Texas Instruments needs to recruit 500 analog engineers a year," said Del Whitaker, TI senior vice president. "To put that in perspective, there are not 500 [graduate level] analog engineers graduating in one year [from U.S. universities]. ... We hope that TI's commitment reinforces to students and potential students of analog engineering that this is an important, growing discipline that's critical to the future of electronic innovations."

TI is the leading company in the analog/mixed signal market, and Tech produces more graduate-level analog engineers than any other U.S. university. According to J. Alvin Connelly, professor and vice chairman in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, this new educational partnership between TI and Georgia Tech will strengthen the products of both organizations.

"With this fellowship program, we will be able to attract the best and most promising graduate-level, electrical engineering students to Georgia Tech and to focus their education on mastering analog integrated circuit design, applications and related topics," Connelly said. "The students in this program will learn analog IC design from our excellent faculty and then apply these skills in co"op and intern assignments with TI engineers. I am certain that many of these students will continue with TI as permanent employees after they graduate from Georgia Tech."

For more than seven years, Georgia Tech and TI have enjoyed fruitful educational and research collaborations through the Georgia Tech Analog Consortium, an organization comprised of seven faculty members, five other industry partners and 50 graduate students. More than 15 TI engineers have attended one or more of the bi-annual GTAC program reviews, and three graduate level Georgia Tech students have held analog engineering co-op assignments at TI. During the last four years, four master's and doctoral students have finished their degrees at Tech and are pursuing successful careers with TI.

"My analog training at Georgia Tech gave me the knowledge and skills to make a significant contribution to Texas Instruments during my six-month cooperative experience," said Gabriel Rincon-Mora, a senior integrated circuit designer and design team leader with the Power Management Products Group at TI. "In return, this exposure gave me the practical instruction that I used to successfully shape and complete my Ph.D. program at Georgia Tech. The technical skills that I developed as a result of these two institutions have propelled my career to where it is today."

Rincon-Mora, who earned a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Tech in 1996, is the author of several journal publications, the holder of several patents and the designer of many integrated circuits already in the market. He is one of more than 100 Tech graduates employed by Texas Instruments.

For more information on the Georgia Tech Analog Consortium, see its Web site,

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