OSU's Artificial Intelligence and Robotics research group is firmly on the cutting edge. Existing within the larger School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, which boasts 4,500 undergraduates (making it one of the largest programs in the United States), OSU’s AI research group features 33 research faculty and 500+ AI graduate applicants per year. Rife with talent and momentum, the AI research group is ideally suited for collaborative, interdisciplinary efforts both at the university level and beyond.
“In the area of AI, EECS faculty and students have a strong tradition of both theoretical and highly practical research in collaboration with government and industrial partners. The eclectic portfolio of collaborations range from work on AI for cybersecurity, ecology, brain-machine interfaces, hardware accelerators, and real-time language translation, among many others. Our students regularly are hired into both large and small companies for their expertise and experience with AI tools and concepts.”
- Professor Alan Fern, AI, EECS at Oregon State University
Some people worry about AI taking over their world, or at least taking jobs from humans. Rather, the philosophy at OSU is that the best applications of AI don't look to replace people with robots or other automated systems but to enhance their capabilities, efficiency, and reach. The so-called "human-AI partnership" is just one critical element for proper adoption and ultimate amplification that can make AI successful in the field. OSU's focus on this all-important factor is one way it has effectively stood out. Understanding problems on a human level and only then moving to code has been a mantra. Building things that actually work, are replicable, and make any attached investment worth it, are signs of AI success. OSU has many. For example, our feature article on AgAID (link), an agriculturally-centered AI institute featuring ten core members across academia and tech. Creating solutions to tackle difficult problems that farmers face in their quest to supply food to an increasing population, AgAID is an excellent example of AI at work.
AI and Looking to Connect
OSU's AI and Robotics program, part of the larger school of EECS, is a proven resource that represents a significant opportunity not just for students and faculty, but for outside technology companies. The school is producing tomorrow's tech leaders, and getting access to them early is a strategic play for future-minded firms looking to stay ahead.
EECS has an established history of working with industry through direct industrial contracts and joint federally-funded partnerships. With the growing prominence of AI in industry and society, the goal is to dramatically increase such partnerships. One mechanism for this is the Pervasive Personal Intelligence Center (PPI). Similar to AgAID in that it combines multiple leading research universities with over 60 members from high tech to delve into all things IoT (link to an IoT project at OSU?). Operating under the NSF-IUCRC model, the PPI states on its website that it works to "support the thrusts that enable an entirely new class of applications, with intelligence that is predictive instead of reactive, thus making processes more efficient and saving time, energy, and money." OSU's involvement in this program, which has both domestic and international reach, is one of leadership in the AI realm. AI at OSU seeks to be a resource to industry. This includes educating top talent to be hired, as well as working with faculty.
OSU’s AI program invites collaboration, both interdisciplinarily within the college, and outside into greater academia and industry. Using AI to solve real world, specific problems is the main thrust of the program. By any measure, we should be able to look forward to this program's continued success and growth within EECS at Oregon State.
If you’re interested in connecting with the AI and Robotics Program for hiring and collaborative projects, please contact AI-OSU@oregonstate.edu.