Industry Spotlight INNOVATION/Information Technology the growth of Texas Instruments and the founding of Electronic Data Systems (started by H. Ross Perot in 1962, now an HP company). “It started with a powerful growing number of companies that were hiring engineers, IT professionals and scientists, and it all sort of started to build upon itself,” Sproull said. The University’s Role The significant expansion of the region’s technology sector over the past couple of decades has resulted in a very large, diverse and well-educated workforce, according to Gray Mayes, director of government relations for Texas Instruments (TI). The University of Texas at Arlington, Texas A&M, University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) and the University of North Texas (UNT) are turning out a large talent base of employees each year, and are also making huge advances in attracting more dollars. UTD was recently ranked as one of the top engineering schools in the nation, and Collin County Community College recently received a $20 million workforce development grant. Because of investments like these, according to Mayes, “North Texas has become a true innovation hub, and ensures our region will be a notable player in the transformation of the global economy.” Big Players in Tech The Telecom Corridor® is located 15 miles north of downtown Dallas and covers an area of approximately 30 square miles. The campus of TI, UTD and portions of the city of Richardson are located within the corridor, along with a large cluster of some of the major players in tech – Samsung Mobile, Fujitsu, Honeywell, Verizon, MetroPCS, Cisco Systems, Ericsson and many others. Verizon Business moved its wireless, wireline and a few other groups to the Corridor because they found conducting business in the region gave them many advantages, even on a global scale. “We are able to find the professionals with the technology and management skills we need in this area,” said Audrey Lundy, a spokesperson for Verizon Wireless central Texas region.