First Lady Jill Biden tours Intel, boasts community college programs in Arizona visit

Posted at 11:09 AM, Mar 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-08 06:31:25-05

First Lady Jill Biden came to the Valley and Tucson Monday, promoting President Joe Biden's policy priorities under his Building a Better America plan.

When Intel's massive $20 billion expansion project is completed in 2024, the chip manufacturer will need 3,000 people to fill the jobs it will create. That was one reason for the First Lady's visit.

Another reason was to learn more about Intel's collaboration with the Maricopa County Community College System.

For decades Intel has worked with the community colleges to develop curriculum to help grow its workforce, including a semiconductor manufacturing boot camp at Mesa Community College. The program is funded in part with money from the American Rescue Plan.

"It's going to allow students to start a career in a growing sector that's critical to our economy -- and the first class is going to be all women. Isn't that amazing," the First Lady said.

Dr. Biden, who is a community college professor, received a briefing on the boot camp and took part in a virtual tour of Intel's chip manufacturing.

"These investments are changing lives. And every person who benefits from this program and others like it-- who is better off today than they were a year ago-- passes that benefit along," the First Lady said.

Last week during his State of the Union Address, President Joseph Biden recognized Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger, who sat with the First Lady. The company says it's committed to becoming the unquestioned leader in the production of semi-conductors and that production will happen in Chandler.

After visiting Intel, the First Lady attended a fundraiser event on the Gila River Indian Community before traveling to Tucson where she is spending the night.

On Tuesday Dr. Biden will join the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Xavier Becerra, for a visit to the San Xavier Health Center on the Tohono O'odham Nation as part of the Biden-Harris Administration's Cancer Moonshot initiative.

On Tuesday, the First Lady will tour the San Xavier Health Center in the San Xavier District of the Tohono O'odham Nation to see its effort in treating and curing cancer.

Jill Biden's time in Tucson will wrap up with a tour of the San Xavier del Bac Mission and a traditional dance performance by Tohono O'odham members.

From Tucson, the First Lady will travel to Nevada and Kentucky.