HomeUnited StatesSecretary Antony J. Blinken With Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo, Indiana...

Secretary Antony J. Blinken With Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo, Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb, Senator Todd Young, and Purdue University President Mitch Daniels in a Moderated Conversation on Semiconductors and the CHIPS and Science Act

SECRETARY RAIMONDO:  Thank you.  Same question to you, President Daniels. You have done extraordinary things here – country’s first semiconductor master’s degree program.  What have you learned and where do we go from here?
And by the way, it’s good for the country.  When you walk around and you hear from some of the students, are all the opportunities on the coasts?  As someone from the coast, no.  The opportunity’s right here, and any of these companies would be lucky to have you.
GOVERNOR HOLCOMB:  Choosing my quotes carefully.  But that leads us to challenges throughout history, certainly Colonel Clark, but also President Kennedy when he laid out a challenge.  And to be in this very hall is a reminder of that.  And then the objectives, Secretary Raimondo, that you put forward with the CHIPS and Science Act really got us synchronized, and tactically and strategically as a state.  And of course, the research has been ongoing.  Of course, we’ve been reaching out and working with companies like SkyWater and Mediatech for – on the design and the fab portion of this project.
MR DANIELS:  Thanks.  In a moment we’re going to get to a couple of student questions, but I have one more, and if I may, let me start with the Secretary of State.  Switching geographies here in a big way, you were among the very first – along with our good friend Keith Krach and others – to begin identifying the growing number of ways in which technology issues were intruding on and overlapping with foreign policy issues.  We now refer to this under the heading of tech diplomacy sometimes.  I – for all I know, you coined the term.  But as an early thought leader in this area, could you talk a little bit about that and how some of the work that will happen here has implications for the work you do every day?
So to Secretary Raimondo, Secretary Blinken, as well as our own Hoosier public servants, thank you for a day we’ll remember a long time at Purdue and do all we can to live up to.  Thank you all for coming.  (Applause.)
So we’ve been inspired by that.  We’ve actually tried to build a State Department that’s more fit for purpose.  It wasn’t our natural bread and butter.  We’re usually in the business of trying to prevent conflicts or bring peace, and that’s still the bread and butter, but technology may be a big piece of that.  But we need to make sure that we actually have the organization and the talent to do it.
GOVERNOR HOLCOMB:  A lot’s going on.  Let me first say that I share our Hoosier guests’ excitement and enthusiasm about what we saw here today at Purdue.  I’ve spent most of my life in this state, and every time I come back to the campus I, too, am blown away because they’re working on current issues and vexing, lingering problems that the nation faces and certainly we do as a state.  But I’m reminded as a student of history surrounded by engineers that might – (laughter) – as a student of history I’m reminded of a famous quote from Colonel George Rogers Clark before our nation was even founded, and I’ll paraphrase.  And he said: Great things can be accomplished by men – and women – well conducted.  And so while this was bipartisan, it was also, as Secretary Blinken noted, a multifaceted, multi-government-level effort.  And harnessing not just that purpose but the passion that we all bring to bear has been equally exciting.
SECRETARY RAIMONDO:  I think you have all the ingredients.  There’s no reason it shouldn’t be a trend, no reason it should not be a trend.  You – and by the way, that’s why the Midwest was once forever the industrial heartland.  It’s in your bones to make things here.  And so we have to get back to it, making the next generation of more advanced – advanced manufacturing.  But you have the research universities, the land grant research universities, what we saw today – I don’t want to get any Big 10 rivalries up, but Ohio State’s pretty good, Michigan’s pretty good, Michigan State.
SECRETARY RAIMONDO:  Yeah, great question.  So let me say a few things about this.  The Governor and President referenced the talent shortage and the tight labor market, and you asked for some – a sobering comment.  We have to be very real about the fact that if we don’t as a country, as industry, figure out how to fully tap into and unleash the talent of women in tech companies, we will not compete.  We cannot compete if we leave our most talented women out of the equation.  And now, maybe when I say that you’re thinking: Well, it’s hard; women don’t stick with it, this that and the other.  I will stipulate that.  It’s hard.  I agree with you.  You’re in the business of solving problems.  Solve the problem.  We have to solve the problem together.
And I came to the point where I thought that I needed scientists and technologists around the table just to tell me whether we needed scientists and technologists around the table to figure something out that we weren’t necessarily seeing.  And so we made a real effort to do that, because what we saw is that, look, whether you’re dealing with everything from trying to figure out how to monitor an arms control agreement, to pulling a land mine out of the ground, to tracking refugees around the world, to building stronger food security systems, to electrifying different parts of the planet that need it – and I could go down the list – science, technology, engineering, all of that was front and center.
So it’s at once mentioned – this is an economic security and a national security play, and one that will have the spillover effect of significantly benefiting people here in this room but really all across the industrial Midwest.
MR DANIELS:  Senator?
So let me ask, staring with the Secretary of Commerce: Why should Americans see this as a unique and distinctive new public policy initiative?
MR DANIELS:  Governor, you want to say an amen to that?  (Laughter.)
All of this is part of tech diplomacy, but there is issue after issue where this is front and center in what we’re doing every day.  We’re trying to protect businesses and the country from cyber attacks, unfortunately something that’s increasingly prevalent.  Well, that goes directly to our capacity to understand, deal with, and bring others along when it comes to creating a protective system.  We want to make sure that technology is not used for ill.  We see technology being used by surveillance states.  That’s a huge problem that we’re contending with.  We see technology potentially undermining privacy.  But again, all of these things, if we’re going to be effective in dealing with them, we have to be doing this on a global scale, not just here at home.
Now, how do we get them here in the United States?  It’s pretty clear what other countries are doing.  They were offering some measure of incentives.  It’s analogous to a governor offering incentives to get an employer into their state.
And what the – I think one of the big items involved in this whole act is the federal government putting skin in the game in such a big way has allowed our companies to now take risks that they maybe couldn’t afford to take before.  And so as we coalesce around this mission – and it truly is just that – it’s going to attract more FDI, more foreign direct investment, but it’s going to attract more SkyWaters and more designers, and that whole ecosystem will grow as we have been doing over the last couple centuries, tethered to the industries of the future.  And, obviously, we have the right tax and regulatory environment, we have the energy, the fresh water, unlike some of our competitors around the world.
MR DANIELS:  Unthinkable percentage not long ago.  And by the way, the participation rate, which is stubbornly low in the country, is higher by a couple points in Indiana.  It’s not as though people aren’t willing and eager to work.  So we’ve got our work cut out for us, not just because of the newness and complexity of this new – of this sector, but because we’re going to have to build a semiconductor economy that attracts people when they have a lot of other choices.
SECRETARY RAIMONDO:  I’m tiptoeing into this, but we’ll just say a deep well of public universities which are top notch.  Every CEO I’ve talked to today is thinking about climate risk.  The Midwest is actually very well positioned in that regard – not that anywhere is immune from climate disasters and weather, severe weather events, but well positioned, plenty of water, reasonable energy prices.  And so I – and a hub, as you just said, with Intel and SkyWater, so you’re building from a base.  So I think that it ought to be a trend.  It should be a trend, and I think if you continue to make the right investments in workforce training, investing in your public universities, in having good business practices, good place to do business, I feel great about the opportunity.
SECRETARY BLINKEN:  And by the way, well-conducted may be the perfect term for this.  (Laughter.)
So I – yeah, I’m excited about it.  It’s not just building stuff.  We talked today about packaging, design.  It’s all of that.  And that’s what this will be for.
SECRETARY RAIMONDO:  I know – okay.  (Laughter.)  I’m —
And somewhat more familiar to Boilermakers, our great Governor Eric Holcomb, our Senator – senior senator – Todd Young, who have graced us with their presence several times, and welcome back, of course.
GOVERNOR HOLCOMB:  2.6.
Think of Bell Labs, right?  A lot of you are smiling.  The young people are like, “What are you talking about?”  (Laughter.)  There’s a great book about it.  Go google Bell Labs.  The loss – the diminishing of Bell Labs was a real loss for this country.  It was a beehive of activity, a place where inventors and innovators could come together to solve problems and produce an enormous amount of research and great products.
And I remember telling that audience Purdue will speak for the first 7 or 8 percent; you folks figure out the rest.  And we’ve done that.  We are now by a clear margin the largest engineering college, for instance, in the top five in the world.  Similar growth has happened in computer science, the natural sciences, and applied engineering through our newly expanded polytechnic institute.   So we are trying to do our part – the governor mentioned our community college.  We’re offering our curriculum, all that applies to them, so that they can produce associate degrees.  Many of those we hope will advance on to bachelor’s degrees in semiconductor technology, the entire spectrum from materials through design to ultimate manufacturing.  So we’re excited about the role.
SECRETARY RAIMONDO:  I think when history writes about this, it’ll be the beginning of a new chapter of American manufacturing, innovation, research and development.  I really do.  We’ve been on the decline, and this is the beginning of the incline.  And if we do it right, all these hundreds of thousands of jobs we create will go to people who look like America, to your question.
And now, of course, as we are dealing with a world that is shaped – our lives are literally shaped day in, day out by technology, starting with the chip – but whether it’s quantum, whether it’s AI, whether it’s biotech, the way we live, the way we work, all of that is shaped by technology.  So that’s one piece of it.
America has always been and will always be a country of inventors, innovators, and entrepreneurs.  That’s what makes us great.  It’s at core to our strength.  And as I said before, we’ve fallen behind.  We haven’t been investing enough in basic research.  We heard it today.  We heard it today on the tour how much of what is happening here began with a federal grant, whether it’s from NIST or the Department of Defense, some collaboration between the federal government and universities.
So this 11 billion will be for the National Semiconductor and Technology Center, and it is – we talked today about going from lab to fab.  We talked about how if you want to compete, you have to go fast, you have to reduce the time between lab and fab.  That’s what this is for.  So what we’re envisioning is exactly what you’re doing here, quite frankly, which is bringing together universities with companies, with the federal government, to solve problems – interdisciplinary hubs of research and development to solve problems.  Very applied.
SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Happy to take a look at a CV right after this.  We can talk.  (Laughter.)
MR DANIELS:  Don’t worry.
SECRETARY RAIMONDO:  Yeah, thank you.  First, I have to tell you all how blown away we have been with what we’ve seen here this morning at Purdue.  Incredible.  Thank you to your hospitality and your leadership.  To the professors, I have been on countless tours of this kind.  This was the best, fantastic.  And the energy from the students, just incredible.  So this is what American needs.  This is what America needs – public sector working with the private sector, working with universities, tapping into the next generation of talent, solving problems in an interdisciplinary way.  Amazing.  So I want to thank you for that.  (Applause.)
So one of things that we’re doing is we’re here at Purdue.  We’re trying to open people’s eyes to the possibility of not only public service, which by the way, whatever it is, if you – any of you get a chance to do that, please consider it.  We need the most talented people in public service.  And what I’ve experienced, just as a parenthesis, as I know there can be a lot of cynicism about it at times, but most of the people that I’m fortunate enough to work with, including everyone on this platform today, are just trying to do what they think is the right thing to make the country a little bit healthier, wealthier, wiser, stronger.  And that’s what really counts.  (Applause.)
SECRETARY RAIMONDO:  I love this.
The happy coincidence that we will reference from time to time is what benefits our economic security also benefits the industrial Midwest, where for generations we’ve prided ourself on making things.  These are higher-end things, so we include funding to prepare people to research, to design, and ultimately to manufacture these computer chips here in the industrial Midwest.
SENATOR YOUNG:  Well, I want to thank Purdue for putting on such a great presentation today.  And I say that directly to the postdocs we heard from, many of the rank-and-file students, and of course the professors.  It really is impressive, and I think it’s indicative of the fact that Indiana is ready to go as it relates to implementing this effort.
MR DANIELS:  Governor.
SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Mitch, this really came out of necessity more than anything else.  For my sins I’ve spent a lot of time in government – (laughter) – now 30 years.  And last time I was in government, during the Obama administration, working at the White House and the State Department, sitting around these conference tables grappling with foreign policy problems, challenges we had around the world, it struck me – and not a novel insight, but it nonetheless struck me that so many of the solutions or at least part of the solution probably had a science or tech component to it, and yet most of us who are working on foreign policy are not brought up in these disciplines.  If you look, there are exceptions, but for the most part people are coming from the humanities, coming from law, and so it’s not our natural instinct.
MR DANIELS:  Asking for a friend?  (Laughter.)
Let’s think about teaching engineering differently.  Let’s think about mentorship initiatives.  Let’s think about starting earlier.  The Governor talks about from pre-K and such – start when girls are four, five years old.  I – prior to this gig, I was the Governor of Rhode Island, and one of the things I did there was we became I think the first state in the country to teach computer science in every public school, in every grade, starting in kindergarten.  And we did that by partnering with companies to do it – innovative.  And since we did that, not surprisingly, the number of women and students of color taking and succeeding on the AP Computer Science exam skyrocketed.  So we just have to do it.  We have to find ways to have more women at every level of science, technology, engineering, and math in academia and in business.
MR DANIELS:  Did you want to lead the witness with a question about workforce?  (Laughter.)
But if you’re interested in climate policy, come to the State Department.  We are trying to – John Kerry is leading efforts by now to make sure that we are bringing the rest of the world along with us as we try to grapple with this issue.  If you’re interested in cyber security and cyber policy, well, we’re trying to be at the leading edge of that.  If you’re interested in any one of the many challenges that we’re – that we face that have technology and science at their heart, come on down to the State Department.  We need you.
But it really starts much earlier than that if we’re going to truly have a pipeline that’s going to be able to supply that talent on an ongoing basis, and to be able to scale at the rate and velocity that’s required for us not just to compete but catch up and lead.  And so we start very early in the state of Indiana, very intentionally, with K through 12 – and you mentioned lab to fab.  We view this as GED to PhD.  And everyone has not just a role to play, but an opportunity to play it, and the state of Indiana is putting our money where our mouth is and making those investments regionally to be able to respond to the needs of not just the industry, but of the community.  Our community college is here today as well, Ivy Tech.  Vincennes University will have a prominent role in this, making sure students that come out of high school have a brightly lit pathway that they can contribute to this national and economic security issue.
MR DANIELS:  Mr. Secretary?
It really flows exactly from what we were talking about a few minutes ago, which is – it’s pretty simple.  We need and we are looking for folks who are not just trained and experienced in the humanities; we need STEM.  We need engineers.  We need technologists.  We need folks who are steeped in AI and biotech, you name it.  And we need that because of what we were just talking about.  So many of the issues that we are actually dealing with every single day are crosscutting and bring in science and technology in ways that we have to make sure we’re ready and effective in doing our jobs.
Last thing I’ll say is just a few months ago we set up – the State Department’s organized around bureaus.  These are the most important components of the organizational structure of our department.  We established a bureau for cyber security and digital policy.  We now have a senior envoy for emerging technology.  We want to make sure that we can play our part, we can do what we need to do, to help advance the national interest when it comes to this.
And that, by the way, is partially an answer to your question, which is this isn’t – some say picking winners and losers or, quote/unquote, “industrial policy.”  This is a once-in-a-generation investment.  It’s an investment in research and development, workforce, public-private partnerships to rebuild the semiconductor supply chain here in the United States.  It’s a sad story if you look at it, but over the past decades the amount of money that the federal government has invested in basic research has declined substantially.  The amount of semiconductors produced on our shores has declined precipitously, even though we invented the industry.  And so it’s time to get back in the game, invest in ourselves, invest in our strength, so that America can compete, America can lead the world in this critical technology, we can have economic security and national security.
MR DANIELS:  Greetings, everyone, and thanks for coming to a day of enormous privilege and excitement for Purdue University, to have two of the world’s leading public servants with us.  And we’d like to think it was something other than a convenient flight plan that brought them here.  (Laughter.)  So we spent a think a very productive morning showing them how Purdue is attempting to contribute to the urgent national need for supremacy in microelectronics, semiconductors, and all the things we think we have to offer.  So we’re really grateful.  Please, join me in welcoming Secretaries of State Antony Blinken and Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo.  (Applause.)
MR DANIELS:  They’re really not rivals.
So we really welcome hearing from people.  We have – we’re bringing in fellows from the sciences.  We have, as I said, new bureaus that are focused on science and technological pursuits.  We want to make sure that we have the talent to actually fill those bureaus, run those bureaus, and carry us into the future – so – and I’ll see you just around the corner.  (Laughter.)
And in addition to that, we welcome on an annual basis a number of refugees from the state of Illinois – (laughter) – who I’m always proud to greet.  And one of them is our questioner this morning, so let me introduce Denae Galloway, an ECE student from Orland Hills I believe it is.  Denae.  And thank you for joining us this morning, and your question, please.
Some people have said chips are the oil of this economy.  I think that’s true and then some.  And why not make it in America?
And I think we’ll see enhanced national security.  You’ll see the United States of America leading the way when it comes to development and, as we work with partners and allies, co-development of the technologies of the future, which hopefully will allow us to prevent wars, but if ever called upon will allow us to fight and win the wars of the future with many of these technologies.
MR DANIELS:  Well, thanks.  The – Madam Secretary, most of the money and most of the attention so far on the CHIPS Act has focused on the manufacturing end and the fact that we have fallen as far as we have in terms of our share of world production, but you’ve made I think the excellent point that the R&D investments, if properly directed and successful, might be just as important over time.  Would – can you elaborate on that a little?
GOVERNOR HOLCOMB:  And they’re looking for, seeking places of certainty and predictability and stability and continuity.  And that’s what we offer, and so it truly is an exciting time to partner with Purdue, to partner with the corporate sector and local, state, and federal governments and see it actually work and make a difference.  And I’m confident it will.
SENATOR YOUNG:  Thank you.  I think we’ll see a broadening and deepening of our startup and technology economy.  It won’t just include some of our coastal states and hot beds of venture capital investment, but we’ll see it across the industrial Midwest and other areas.  We’ve – we’re planting the seed corn, as we speak, to ensure that’s the case.  We’ll see more opportunities for investors, entrepreneurs, and researchers and in places like Indiana.
SECRETARY RAIMONDO:  Maybe.  So a few times today, the Secretary has said this is a human fab, a talent fab, which is true.  And every company you talk to, literally every one including the ones in booths, will tell you the thing they’re most worried about is talent.  The rate limiting factor to growth is talent.  And by the way, it’s at every level.  Right.  Process engineers, technicians, to the PhD physicists and the like.  Your governor has done a lot here around talent and developing workforce development, so maybe you could talk a little bit, Governor, about what’s working here and how we scale it to meet – to meet the needs.
And let me start by asking really the group.  The people here have been instrumental in the conception and the passage of this fundamentally important new piece of legislation, the CHIPS or CHIPS and Science Act.  Now, some – this was a genuine bipartisan achievement of the kind that are pretty rare these days, and so it’s noteworthy for – if only for that reason.  But more so, it became a subject of some controversy, as all such big ideas do.  And some would characterize it as the industrial policy of the kind that often hasn’t worked out too well.  But many believe – and I’m one – that it has distinctive features that differentiate it from some of those in the past.
MR DANIELS:  Last word, Mr. Secretary.
SECRETARY RAIMONDO:  Yeah, absolutely.
MR DANIELS:  Over recent years, Purdue University has been privileged to play host to some spectacular leadership from all sectors of all society, but never a day that I recall in which we’ve – I’ve felt more fortunate to have leaders as relevant both to our national success and to the mission we’ve attempted to adopt here at Purdue University.
SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Well, first, let me just say I’m in violent agreement with my friend Gina about what’s happening here and what we saw this morning.  Boy, if you need a jolt of optimism, it’s right here.  Optimism about our country, optimism about the future – it’s all right here. This is, I think, the most exciting human fab that I’ve ever seen.  And building the next generation of leaders in technology – it’s incredibly powerful.  So I couldn’t agree more, and I’m really, Mitch, just grateful to you, grateful to our colleagues for bringing us here and making sure that we could experience this firsthand.
The other piece of it is that whether we like it or not, in order to make sure that technology is being used in a way that hopefully advances our interests, hopefully reflects our values, we have to be engaged with other countries.  We don’t have the luxury of getting to decide this and shape this alone.  And so for us, at least, getting into that tech diplomacy, making sure that the United States is at the table when decisions are being made – for example, about what are the rules, what are the norms, what are the standards that decide how technology is going to be used.  Well, a lot of that’s happening in some windowless room somewhere around the world.  We need to be there, and not only do we need to be there, we need to be able to carry the debate.  And part of that is making sure we have the most talented expert people doing this.  Part of it is also making sure that we have the alliances and partnerships of likeminded countries so that our collective weight can carry the day.
This effort, from the beginning, it’s been focused on enhancing our economic security and our national security at once.  Anyone that – who needs evidence that our economic security has been undermined by our inability to source especially high-end chips here in the United States, but even some of the commodity chips, need look no further than Fort Wayne, Indiana, where you’ve seen an idling of a GM plant twice this year already.  Visit some of our farmers who are unable to get their combines fixed because the essential computer chips that go into those machinery cannot be sourced.  Basically anything with an on/off switch these days requires microprocessors, and so our country is going to have to have at least some measure of independence with respect to these to prepare for the next interruption.  It could be a global pandemic or it could be a geopolitical rival that, with great intentionality, decides to interrupt sourcing of these computer chips from other countries.
So I’m really glad that we’re here, but I’m especially glad that you asked the question because I know it might not be the natural instinct of people to say, “Oh, the State Department’s a place that I can work.”  But if you look at the many things that we’re doing, you’ll probably find an avenue to actually do what you’ve been trained in and want to do and actually make a difference – make a difference here in the United States for our country, but also make a difference around the world.
MR DANIELS:  Listening to the question and the answers has me reflecting back – I’m near the end of 10 years here.  But one of the first major speeches I was asked to give was to the National Academy of Engineers in 2013.  And at that time, the – on everyone’s mind was the Augustine Report, a national commission which had reported, oh, within a year or two before that, and its primary finding was the single most important thing to the nation’s competitiveness and future success was to turn out at least 10,000 more engineers a year.  Well, that happened to coincide with our plans and dreams for the growth of Purdue University, and specifically in the engineering and the STEM disciplines.
SECRETARY RAIMONDO:  Yes, thank you.  So the CHIPS Act is a billion investment, and all of the excitement and coverage frequently focuses on the 39 billion that will be incentives for companies to build fabs in America, which we desperately need.  But there’s 11 billion for research and development.
I guess the last thing I’ll say is we should all be sober about the challenges here.  There’s a labor shortage in this country.  This state, largely through some great public leadership, is below the level we have thought of as full employment.
So why am I here, since my portfolio does not usually extend to things domestic?  It’s pretty simple.  What we do here at home goes directly to our standing and our ability to lead around the world.  And when other countries see us coming together in the way we’ve been able to come together with the CHIPS Act, not just across parties, but across academia, industry, government, at the state level, the federal level, that sends a very powerful message.  And it says that we’re going to be making the investments that we need to remain the world’s leader in the most critical technology that’s defining our future.  And that becomes a really powerful source of attraction. Other countries want to work with us; they want to partner with us; they want to stand with us.  So for me, the investments that we’re making at home, they go directly to my ability to help effectively represent the country around the world.
SENATOR YOUNG:  Illinois?  (Laughter.)
QUESTION:  Thank you for having me.  Secretary Raimondo, we’ve heard a lot this morning about the need to fill jobs in the semiconductor industry.  So how can young students, especially women as myself, prepare to be competitive in this growing market?
GOVERNOR HOLCOMB:  Well, thanks – yeah, thanks for the softball.  Yeah, I mean, as a – the reason I’m most encouraged is this is nothing new to us.  We’ve been doing this since the founding of our state, forging our way out of the forest and innovating and manufacturing and making things, growing things.  We’ve figured that out.  We’ve developed very mature supply chain lines in multiple sectors.  When you think about our state, orthopedics, life sciences, advanced manufacturing, logistics – all of these areas are dependent on that linchpin, that semiconductor, that transistor that’s going to make, that’s going to power not just our future but our – the actual companies.
QUESTION:  Secretary Blinken, I’d first like to start off by saying thank you on behalf of the entire student body for being here today.  And my question is: As you had the opportunity to see today, Purdue is currently hosting the Industrial Roundtable, which is one of the largest student-run job fairs in the nation.  And I couldn’t help but notice that the Department of State is currently looking for new talent, and I was wondering, what sorts of skills or attributes are you guys looking for out of new hires?  (Laughter.)
But bring us a dose of realism if we need it.  Our – will we look back at these as interesting exceptions or the beginning of a trend that does lead to this Silicon Heartland that people talk about?
MR DANIELS:  Thank you.  By fascinating coincidence, we’re having to learn something about your world too.  I’m proud to tell you that Purdue has thrown its arms open.  We have welcomed more Ukrainian scholars than any other school we’re aware of, and I look forward, of course, to them being able to go home safely, but for now they can continue their work here.
MR DANIELS:  Thank you, Jack.  We’re down literally to our last few minutes, so let me just offer each of the group, lightning-round style, a chance to address this general question:  This new achievement in which each of you played a significant role of the CHIPS Act, if and when it succeeds and meets its expectations, what will Americans notice that’s different?  What will Americans see kind of ten years from now that they wouldn’t have seen absent that accomplishment?  Senator, would you go first?
MR DANIELS:  Thank you, Denae.  Great question.  And we have a question from Jack Brewer, from right here in West Lafayette, a political science major.  Jack.
And there’s a national security component to this which also cannot go unmentioned.  Our missile systems, basically all of our high-end weapon platforms require very sophisticated computer chips, and we need to make those here and ensure that they’re made in a trusted fashion, not tampered with, and so we have the resident capability – I’m looking at representatives from Crane.  They’ve been experts at – in this area of microchip production and inspection for a generation now, and we’re going to be able to saddle them up and get them more into the game.
And for the women, obviously what you need to do is what you’re doing: Go to a world-class institution, work as hard as you can, seek out mentorship, and if you’re trained here and you do well, you will get a job and you – as I said before, a company will be lucky to have you.  And I would say, on a more personal level, although I’m not a scientist – my dad was a chemist; he always wished that I could be, but I don’t know, that wasn’t my path – politics, every business, a lot of industries – I used to be in the business world; I sat on a dozen corporate boards, never with another man.  I was the first female governor of Rhode Island.  You’ve just got to stick with it.  Stick with it, because the world needs you to stick with it, because you have the talent and ability to solve the problems that we need to be solved.  (Applause.)
SECRETARY BLINKEN:  I think it’s been covered incredibly well and comprehensively.  I’d just say that what I would expect to see, if we sustain this – if we carry it forward, if we do it, if we actually implement it – I think you’ll see a lasting recognition that America’s back, America is back on the world (inaudible).  And we’re going to see that countries respond to the fact that we’re making these investments in our future.  They’re going to want to work with us.  They’re going to want to partner with us.  And they’re going to want to look to our leadership too.  And that is going to have a material impact on our ability to provide for the safety, the wellbeing, the prosperity of our people.  So if we get this right – which is not a guarantee, but if we get it right –  I think it does wonders over time in strengthening our standing around the world and really strengthening American leadership.
And so it really is advantage Indiana, not to mention we’re here at Purdue – proudly so – but we also sport, so to speak, Notre Dame and Indiana University and Trine.  So we have this network of colleges and universities, public and private, community colleges as well, that really are the feeder system into a SkyWater’s bright future.
So we’re going to spend between now and just shy of 12:15 trying to draw out some further thoughts on these topics, and I’m going to move as quickly, then, as I can to get the conversation going.
GOVERNOR HOLCOMB:  I think we’ll see – just to echo the Senator’s point – I think we’ll see a continued broadening of our kind of seven sector development here in the State of Indiana.  I’m reminded by Secretary Blinken’s comment earlier that as we get around the world, certainly part of my job is to try to bring more investment to the state of Indiana.  And although I don’t do foreign policy – I’m not going to get on the wrong side of the Logan Act ever, wouldn’t dream of it – but I am trying to bring back partnerships and solve problems together.  And that requires a diverse perspective and that’s going to help us get there faster as well.  And so I’m reminded with every visit I have that everyone has a neighbor to the north, south, east, or west and some are hostile; some are very friendly.
Finally, I’d say this, Mitch, to your question as well:  Look, we are also dealing with other countries around the world that are making massive investments in the industries and technologies of the future.  I think one of the things that separates us is when government comes in, what it can do most effectively is to really be a catalyst for the private sector and other stakeholders in our country to move forward.  So this is not about government doing and paying for everything.  It’s government, hopefully, bringing people together in a smart way, acting as a catalyst, and inspiring the kind of investment we need to carry us forward.
MR DANIELS: Madam Secretary.
MR DANIELS:  So let me pick up on something that was mentioned a time or two.  Many of us in this part of the country have imagined for a long time that the difference in, I’ll say, business conditions, cost, quality of life, and other factors would lead ultimately to some migration of investment and people from the coasts to the Midwest, and a lot of people are talking about that. We’re excited.  We see what happened at Intel earlier this week.  Of course, we’re thrilled at the SkyWater investment, the only all-American-owned semiconductor company – (applause) – planning to come here.


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