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From hospitals to drone racing, artificial intelligence is at the heart of technology that is shaping life today. With a new online graduate program, Johns Hopkins Engineering is seeking to prepare engineers and scientists to enter the workforce that’s building those advances.
The master’s and certificate program, offered through the Engineering for Professionals program at JHU’s Whiting School of Engineering, opened enrollment and is set to begin classes for the summer session on May 26.
The program is designed so that students can learn from practitioners in the field, said give them a chance to learn from leaders in the field, said Daniel Horn, associate dean of the Engineering for Professionals program.
Horn called it a “huge feather in our cap” that the AI program is chaired by John Piorkowski, a chief AI architect at JHU’s Applied Physics Laboratory (APL). Instructors will include researchers, scientists and engineers, including others from Laurel-based APL.
With AI playing a role in many fields, Piorkowski said there is increased demand for roles like machine learning engineer, which handles the development and architecture that creates those systems.
“As the world changes and as technology changes we try to be responsive to the needs of the broader community,” he said.
As such, new advanced-level courses are being introduced. One is applied machine learning, which builds on machine learning instruction about building algorithms to explore, “How do I use them? How do I understand them? How do I apply them to the problems I am trying to solve?” Piorkowski said. Another is in creating AI-enabled systems. Courses will also cover topics of AI like natural language processing, robotics, neural networks, computer intelligence and expert systems.
When it comes to instruction, the discipline draws from a variety of fields. That means folks can bring knowledge from a number of backgrounds.
“It is our hope that the new artificial intelligence graduate program will encourage and enable people with a background in engineering, computer science, data, physics or applied math to enhance their marketability to become leaders in this emerging field,” Horn said.
Engineering for Professionals offers more than 20 programs online. The courses are structured to be flexible, with lectures are parsed into short videos and the opportunity to meet with instructors once a week via Zoom. In all, 10 courses are required for a master’s degree, and four are required for a certificate.
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