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10 SMT007 MAGAZINE I DECEMBER 2021 Feature Interview by Barry Matties I-CONNECT007 In a far-ranging interview, Dr. John Mitchell and Barry Matties discuss the upcoming IPC APEX EXPO, IPC programs, and the chal- lenges (and opportunities) facing our industry. If you think Dr. Mitchell's assessment would be pessimistic, you'd be wrong. Barry Matties: John, what are you most excit- ed about for the upcoming IPC APEX EXPO? Dr. John Mitchell: Getting together with the in- dustry again. Unlike years past, it's been a long time since most of us have been together face- to-face. While we're going to have a lot of tre- mendous and compelling content, the thing I'm most excited about is for everybody in the industry being able to reengage. We're an industry that enjoys and needs to work together, and we've been held at bay for too long. roughout 2021, at every con- ference I've attended, people are really excit- ed about seeing each other again. And since APEX EXPO is one of the premier events for the industry, that is the thing I'm happiest about—getting people back together again, getting them excited. In addition, I'm also excited that we're part- nering with Altium, whose AltiumLive design conference will be co-located with APEX EXPO. Matties: Tell me about that. How did that come about and what's the benefit? Mitchell: IPC has been providing standards and education on the design front for decades. But there's a dearth of good, experienced, young engineers. We've been trying to encourage stu- dents to consider engineering and design as a great career path. Altium, similarly focused, makes a lot of their soware freely available to students. AltiumLive connects all aspects of the engi- neering design and development communi- ty, and we think that co-locating AltiumLive at APEX EXPO will benefit our attendees, too, since we have so many design programs to offer. John Mitchell: Focus on the Future

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