SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — As construction at the Micron site in the Town of Clay continues, so do plans for building the company’s workforce.

That’s exactly why Onondaga Community College is rolling out Micron-specific academic programs for students beginning in Fall 2023.

The first is an Associate Degree in Electromechanical Technology. This is a two-year program focused on troubleshooting electrical and mechanical systems, but what exactly does that mean?

Below is a breakdown of the Electromechanical Technology A.A.S. program:

  • Students gain a fundamental understanding of the technology used in the advanced manufacturing/semiconductor industry
  • Instructional areas include: Industrial Automation, Robotics, Hydraulic and Pneumatic Systems, Mechanisms, Industrial Electricity, Programming, Motors, Controllers, and Motion
  • Other skills learned include: Safety, Blueprint Reading, Hand Tools, Precision Measurement Tools, Statistical Process Control, and Programmable Logic Controller Programming
  • Possible career fields: Manufacturing and Automation
  • Bonus: OCC partners with local manufacturers and service companies to give students hands-on experience in a manufacturing environment

The second educational opportunity for students is a one-year certificate program. OCC’s Electromechanical Technology certificate program is similar to the two-year Associate program but touches on those foundational skills and prepares students for entry-level work. Credits earned in the certificate program are transferable toward the two-year Electromechanical Technology degree.

Onondaga Community College is planning to offer two cohorts in the Fall of 2023. 18 students will take courses during the day, and another 18 at night. If there’s a need to expand the cohorts, OCC will.

The college also said scholarships will be offered to future Electromechanical Technology students.

As chair of the Applied Engineering Technologies Department at OCC, Mike Grieb knows just how crucial hands-on learning is, which is what makes the college’s new programs unique.

“There’s a lot of online learning for this stuff and it sometimes doesn’t always connect with people. Having the ability to actually make connections electrically, numerically, see how mechanisms work and try to figure out diagnose…This really connects with certain people and really gives them a leg up and get that confidence that they’ll need when they get out in the workplace. There’s excitement and fear. I think there’s a lot of challenges ahead of us, but I think the students are excited. They see this equipment. They want to get their hands on it. They want to understand it in a way that’s a little different from what we’ve been teaching.”


Learning isn’t only going to be done in the classroom but in OCC’s future clean room simulation lab. If you know where the OCC campus bookstore is now, that’s exactly where the clean room will be! The college is still in the design process and construction should be complete by 2024.

“We had Micron vet the program and they said it would meet their needs. We’ve heard from students and parents looking for getting their kids into the program, but we’ve also heard a lot from our K-12 partners. Many of the districts are quite interested in where their students can go and also partnerships for taking those courses at the high school level.”


To continue engaging young students throughout Central New York, Micron is hosting a Chip Camp at Onondaga Community College on July 11-13.

The camp will be open to 100 rising 8th and 9th graders from the East Syracuse Minoa Central School District, Syracuse City Schools, Lafayette Central School District, and Oswego County high schools.