South Carolina is rapidly becoming the destination of choice for some of the world’s largest manufacturers, and the University of South Carolina is working to ensure the Palmetto State is home to cutting-edge advanced manufacturing research and workforce development.

USC will lead a group of 10 higher education institutions in South Carolina, including South Carolina State University, committed to building the state’s existing industries while attracting new ones. The project, announced Sept. 19, is part of a five-year, $20 million National Science Foundation grant called Materials Assembly and Design Excellence in South Carolina, or MADE in SC.

The MADE in SC consortium will engage in advanced materials research and development, create a pipeline of highly trained workers to enter South Carolina’s advanced manufacturing industry and increase the capacity for economic growth and vitality in the state. As part of its focus, the effort also will expand workforce diversity through programming aimed at increasing underrepresented faculty hires as well as graduate and undergraduate students pursuing advanced materials research at all participating institutions.

The collaborating partners in MADE in SC include the state’s three comprehensive research universities (USC, Clemson University and the Medical University of South Carolina, MUSC), four research-active, predominantly undergraduate colleges (the College of Charleston, Furman University, USC Beaufort and Winthrop University), public and private historically black universities (South Carolina State University, SCSU and Claflin University) and a public technical college (Florence-Darlington Technical College).

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