Skip to main content

Technology center named for astronaut

Costa Rica has taken another step into a future of microprocessors and modems with the December 1 inauguration of its new National Center for High Technology in San José.The new center, which will admit its first students this year, will help meet the country's growing need for workers to staff high technology production and research facilities. It will also enhance Costa Rica's attractiveness to multinational firms looking for new production sites. For example, Intel Corporation based its decision to build a $300 million microprocessor plant there to a large extent on the high educational level of the population (See The IDB, June 1997).

The new center was named in honor of Franklin Chang-Díaz, a Costa Rican-born scientist and astronaut (see box below). The inaugural ceremonies were part of the observance of the day Costa Rica abolished its armed forces.

The building housing the center, which formerly belonged to the United States Agency for International Development, was donated to the Costa Rican government. It is now being renovated and equipped with the help of financing from the IDB and a number of other organizations and high tech firms, among them, Microsoft, DSC. Motorola, Acer, Intel and Sawtec.

Instruction and laboratory facilities will be offered in materials science, advanced manufacturing processes, biotechnology, genetic engineering, informatics and computer science. The center will be administered by national higher education board CONARE.

Jump back to top