Stellantis & US DoE announce Battery Workforce Challenge
Stellantis and the US Department of Energy (DOE) are calling on budding engineers at vocational schools and universities to enter the ‘Battery Workforce Challenge’ this fall. It is a three-year team engineering competition that includes other training.
The Battery Workforce Challenge does not only focus on fostering science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) degrees but also includes a more “hands-on” project with an advanced battery design and development student competition series, for which the companies have invited universities and vocational schools from across North America to design, build, test and integrate an advanced electric vehicle battery into a future Stellantis vehicle.
Competitor teams will then follow real-world industry milestones focused on battery design, simulation, controls development, testing, and vehicle integration and demonstration, which the initiators of the project say will help teach them valuable lessons, including “project management, communications, teamwork and problem-solving skills”.
A total of eleven teams will be allowed to participate, for which the Argonne National Laboratory is now accepting applications from colleges and universities. Generally, a four-year programme is required for educational institutions to participate, however, “Non-accredited schools, such as community colleges, trade schools and apprenticeship programs, may participate as a partner to an accredited university as part of the vocational collaboration requirement.”
“American leadership in the global battery supply chain will be based not only on our innovation, but also on our skilled workforce of engineers, designers, scientists, production workers and technicians,” said Deputy Assistant Secretary for Sustainable Transportation and Fuels at the US Department of Energy Michael Berube. “This comprehensive workforce program will build an educational ecosystem delivering training and education for high school graduates, and vocational and transitional workers, fostering a diverse talent pipeline of trained engineers, workers and technicians who can charge North America’s battery industry forward.”