Gateway Technical College President Talks Foxconn In Annual Address

The president of Gateway Technical College says the proposed Foxconn LCD manufacturing plant is a “unique and rare opportunity” for the region to be part of a “dynamic ecosystem.”

Bryan Albrecht gave his annual address to faculty members Monday as the school prepared to open the fall semester. Much of the speech focused on Foxconn, the Tiawanese company expected to build a huge manufacturing plant employing up to 13,000 workers in either Racine or Kenosha counties.

Albrecht spoke via video  because he had to be in Milwaukee on Monday morning to work with other schools in the region on a coordinated approach to help Foxconn recruit and train workers.

Gateway, he said, will more than likely train thousands of technicians that’ll be hired to maintain what he calls the most advanced manufacturing system in the world. “It’s what you could refer to as ‘lights out’ manufacturing because it’ll pretty much run itself,” Albrecht said.  

Still, challenges lie ahead, said Albrecht, highlighting the need to regulate and monitor the plant’s daily use and discharge of 8 million gallons of Lake Michigan water with “unbelievable protections.”  

Albrecht predicted the hurdles will be overcome and the plant will be built, saying the process is still in its early stages.

“The most advanced manufacturing facility in the world will be built in our backyard,” he told the teachers. “The most sophisticated training programs will be ours to create,” he said  “Generation after generation will have the opportunity to have a better life in southeast Wisconsin as a result.” 

After the speech, Gateway IT instructor Allen Pearson said, “If ultimately, if it ends up being what was presented, I think he’s right,” Pearson said.

Albrecht urged faculty to stay abreast of developments and ask questions. 

Foxconn has yet to announce where it’ll built its plant, but Albrecht said the company is evaluating sites in Kenosha and Racine counties, both of which are within the…

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