National Research Council Canada (NRC) estimates that the impact of Quantum Technologies on Canada will be $533M and 1,100 jobs by 2025 leading to a $138.9B industry, with 209,200 jobs by 2045. In response, Budget 2021 announced $360M of new dedicated funding. Much of the coming quantum funding will flow through NSERC and thus come with a mandate for training. Similarly, Europe, the US, China, and the UK have funding programs on the scale of $1B each.
In sum, there is an urgent need for producing highly qualified personnel well trained in quantum technologies. The University of Ottawa has a unique opportunity to become a lead in training areas of Quantum Materials and Quantum Photonics.
The global quantum technologies workforce will need three types of training:
- QUANTUM AWARE – Non-math training in the concepts in, advantages of, and opportunities for quantum technologies. This is intended for business, communications, law, and some engineers.
- QUANTUM ADEPT – Minimally trained in the math of quantum technologies plus experiential training in applications (e.g. quantum programming). This gives engineers, computer scientists, and mathematicians the basic quantum physics needed to work in quantum companies, say, developing hardware, electronic control, software stacks, etc.
- QUANTUM INNOVATORS – Deep PhD level training in quantum technologies. Early hires and founders of quantum companies tend to have PhDs, who play a central role in inventing new applications, evaluating technology paths, and performing basic R&D.
With the NexQT already offering graduate degrees focused on quantum technologies, work has commenced on creating a set of mini-courses to satisfy both the QUANTUM AWARE and QUANTUM ADEPT market needs.
The NexQT Fellows working on developing these courses are: