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updated: 8/6/2013 10:07 AM

Oakton hosts nanotechnology open house

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Submitted by Oakton Community College

Learn about career opportunities in the growing nanotechnology industry at a free open house 6 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 8, hosted by Oakton Community College at the conference center of the Illinois Science + Technology Park, 8045 Lamon Ave., Skokie. The event will be repeated at the same time and location on Thursday, Aug. 15.

Nanotechnology plays a critical role in biology, chemistry, engineering, medicine, and physics -- from building microprocessors and delivering anti-cancer drugs efficiently to making clothes more stain resistant and improving sunscreen absorption.

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Nanotechnology is revolutionizing products across all industries -- and by 2015, the field will need 6 million workers and 2.5 million support personnel, with salaries ranging from $30,000 to $95,000 (depending on the level of education). An emerging employment trend in this area is a need for technicians working at the production levels within these companies to complement the research professionals who develop the new products.

Open house activities include presentations by local nanotech companies, opportunities to discuss the curriculum with Oakton faculty and alumni and tour of the laboratory facility that Oakton maintains at the technology park. Refreshments will be served. Parking is available in the garage located at 4835 Searle Parkway.

Oakton's program is supported by the Nanotechnology Education, Employment, and Economic Development Initiative (NEģI), a partnership between the college; the village of Skokie; Forest City Enterprises Inc., which owns and operates the technology park; and the North Suburban Educational Region for Vocation Education (NSERVE), a career and technical education consortium consisting of nine high schools in Chicago's northern suburbs.

This fall, Oakton will offer the 16-week Fundamentals of Nanotechnology I course, which meets 6 to 8:45 p.m. Mondays and Wednesdays starting Aug. 19. Students work with atomic and electron microscopes, nano analysis tools, and fluorescent scopes that enhance 3-D imaging. Students also will have the opportunity to apply for internship opportunities offered by a number of science and technology companies at the technology park.

For questions, contact Robert Sompolski, (847) 635-1975 or ">somplski@oakton.edu

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