Intel Corporation Chairman Craig Barrett today made an impassioned speech on education to Romanian university students, telling them that education and technology are key to creating an innovation economy. Barrett is also collaborating with government officials on ways to broaden the use of computers and other technology to enhance national education. 'Integrating computers and education is essential in the 21st century,' said Barrett, who also chairs the United Nations Global Alliance for Information and Communication Technologies and Development. 'The new technologies and trends that are transforming the global economy will influence the future of today's students, both personally and professionally.' Barrett delivered his address at one of Romania's most prestigious institutions of higher education. The nearly 200 year old University Politehnica of Bucharest (UPB), with 26,000 students, is the country's largest technical university. Speaking to students from information technology departments as well as professors from Bucharest universities, Barrett encouraged listeners to broaden their options for the future by learning as much as they can with the help of information and communications technology (ICT).
In related events, UPB bestowed the honorary title of Doctor Honoris Causa on Barrett today during a special ceremony at the university. The honor recognizes Barrett's intellectual merits, and is the highest degree that UPB awards to any individual. Barrett is also scheduled to meet with government officials today to discuss how Intel can support the Romanian government's plan to strengthen its strategy for technology-assisted education. One existing effort is the Intel Teach program, which is designed to enhance classroom learning by training teachers to integrate technology into the curriculum. Intel teamed with Romanian software developer SIVECO to help administer the training and expects that 35,000 Romanian teachers will complete the Intel Teach program in the coming years. The Intel chairman planned to end his day with the local American Chamber of Commerce at a forum at the National Museum of Art of Romania. Barrett is expected to talk about how Romania can take advantage of ICT to be competitive as one of the newest members of the European Union. He believes investments in ICT infrastructure deployment such as Internet access and broadband technology are vital to economic development and job creation.