Reading time ( words)
During the recent SMTA Houston Expo & Tech Forum, I had the good fortune to meet and interview Joey Sanchez, senior director of ecosystems at The Ion, a 300,000-square-foot space in the renovated historical Sears building in the city’s Midtown section. Opened in 2021, The Ion is part of the 16-acre (12 city blocks) Ion Innovation District, which is currently under development. The facility is owned and managed by Rice University.
The Ion serves as a gathering place for entrepreneurs, students, corporations, and academics to connect, share ideas, learn, and collaborate on innovation. There are many resources onsite for innovation, including prototyping labs with 3D printing, CNC mills, training courses, mentors, and meeting rooms that are open to the public. More than 250 companies occupy the floors above, including Microsoft on the top floor.
Hundreds of events are hosted each year at The Ion, including Cup of Joey, which was started by Joey Sanchez as a walk-in event every Friday morning. It’s where people can meet, enjoy a cup of coffee, and make a connection with a wide array of people. I went to my first Cup of Joey in March, where I connected with people from all parts of life and industry, including Alert Tech SMT, a Houston-based EMS provider.
To read this entire article, which appeared in the May 2023 issue of PCB007 Magazine, click here.
Barry Matties, I-Connect007
John Izzo is a celebrated author, activist, and public speaker who advises companies worldwide on corporate sustainability, social responsibility, leading on purpose, and employee engagement. In this interview with Barry Matties, John offers some suggestions for a better onboarding process, and he answers some of the tough questions that companies are facing regarding employee retention.
Patty Goldman, I-Connect007
Patty Goldman catches up with Gene Weiner, the longest-serving member of IPC, about his experience meeting with the next generation of engineers in IPC’s Emerging Engineers program through a unique contest held at IPC APEX EXPO 2023. Weiner, who has attended well over 60 annual IPC meetings, shared his unflagging optimism and the lessons he’s learned over his illustrious career with the young professionals who managed to find him at the show. With so much still to do, Weiner has no plans to retire any time soon; he’s already hard work helping IPC develop a new program to support aspiring managers in the industry.
Christopher Bonsell, Chemcut
This year, I had the great opportunity to come to IPC APEX EXPO in San Diego as a contributing member in Chemcut’s booth. Being an exhibitor is always interesting because you never know what you will learn or who you will meet. Truly, it seems that every IPC APEX EXPO is an eye-opening experience. This was the second show I attended, and last year I was amazed to see how in-depth and interconnected the electronics industry is. Seeing how many different companies contribute to manufacturing today’s core technology never fails to impress me.