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Systems Automation Springboard to Internships (SASI) program at Miami University

OXFORD, Ohio -- Most of us are aware of the silver tsunami. For those not familiar, you might notice that many of those responsible for providing and maintaining automation systems have thinning, receding, and graying hair. We prefer to think of our hair as silver as opposed to gray. You may also notice that there are not enough of us for the growing demand of automation. This is exacerbated by many of these aging engineers leaving the workforce in a wave of retirement. As we become increasing reliant upon automation with a diminished workforce, this wave of retirement is a silver tsunami that could leave industry wiped out.

Miami University is addressing this by filling the pipeline of young talent into industrial automation. Last year Miami conducted its first Systems Automation Springboard to Internships (SASI) program. This is an intensive 3-week workshop to present students with the full spectrum of automation, from field instrumentation to the top of the enterprise. The purpose of SASI is to not only prepare students to enter an internship/co-op assignment in automation, but also to spark interest in pursuing a career in automation. The workshop is conducted by a team of faculty and industry experts, with lab assignments.

Based on feedback from the inaugural SASI program, it was very successful. The companies that sponsored these students gave high marks for the SASI program. For example, one of the sponsoring companies stated "You have a very strong intern with a wide range of knowledge." Every sponsoring company said that the SASI intern came up to speed rather quickly.

Miami is looking for companies to express an interest in sponsoring a SASI intern by October 20. Sponsoring companies will get resumes and interviews with prospective students to select an intern, and the compensation terms are determined by the sponsoring company. Commitment for sponsorship is desired by November 15. There are 2 components to sponsor a SASI intern:

- fund the $1500 fee for the students to participate in SASI

- provide a process control/automation internship in the summer of 2022 for the student

Details on SASI can be found at, including testimonials from students that completed SASI last year. Contact Gary Rudemiller, Executive Director of the Paper Science & Engineering Foundation at Miami University at for further information.

Don't get swept away by the silver tsunami. Invest in a SASI intern to fill your pipeline of automation talent.


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