How to help high schoolers prepare for the rise of artificial intelligence | MIT News

Ought to synthetic intelligence be allowed to make care selections for sufferers? Although the way forward for AI might conjure up doomsday visions of robots and computer systems intent on rendering human existence superfluous, the MIT Abdul Latif Jameel Clinic for Machine Studying in Well being (Jameel Clinic) addressed questions surrounding using AI in well being via their inaugural summer season program centered on educating highschool college students. 

The Jameel Clinic Summer time Program, which came about July 10-21, accepted a complete of 51 college students from primarily Boston-area faculties, with a dedication to reaching college students from numerous backgrounds.  

This system, which cut up college students up into two cohorts of 25 college students for every week, had core choices together with programs like “Intro to Python,” “Intro to Scientific AI,” and “Intro to Drug Discovery” whereas additionally facilitating journeys to numerous native establishments such because the Museum of Science Boston, Massachusetts Basic Hospital, Janssen Prescription drugs, and Amgen. 

“Organizing this boot camp had a private significance to me. When my household immigrated to Israel, it was robust — my dad and mom and I labored minimal wage jobs to outlive,” College of Engineering Distinguished Professor and Jameel Clinic AI college lead Regina Barzilay remembers. “Going to college remodeled my life. Lots of the college students in this system have related backgrounds. I hope that exposing them to thrilling science at MIT will open new alternatives for them.” 

“I’m not purported to be right here as we speak,” said Collin Stultz, the Nina T. and Robert H. Rubin Professor at MIT and Jameel Clinic principal investigator, on turning into each a pc scientist and heart specialist. In his lecture, Stultz spoke of the hardships his dad and mom endured after immigrating to New York from Jamaica. He emphasised that he and his relations had by no means thought to use to colleges like Harvard College, pondering of it as a college for “folks just like the Kennedys” till Stultz received the concept to use from a classmate who was planning to use.  

“It’s my hope that the interactions between college students within the Jameel Clinic Summer time Program and MIT college will spotlight the wealth of alternatives out there on the intersection of pc science and medication,” Stultz says. 

On account of a beneficiant present from Joseph Bates and Kristin Loeffler via their AI for Humanity Basis, the Jameel Clinic was in a position to provide the summer season program for free of charge and cut back the monetary obstacles for college students from under-resourced backgrounds. Bates shared that on the age of 13 he was found by a psychology professor at Johns Hopkins College and have become the primary teenager to enter the college. “I had been doing an ample, however not good, job in a harmful Baltimore Metropolis public junior highschool,” Bates says. “Being at Hopkins was great, socially and intellectually, and it led me to a pc science PhD at Cornell College, then CS professor at Carnegie Mellon College. Somebody taking an curiosity actually mattered, and it modified my life.” 

In response to the Nationwide Science Basis, the U.S. STEM workforce progressively diversified between 2011 and 2021, with elevated illustration of girls and underrepresented college students of coloration. However within the college-educated workforce, a 2021 report confirmed that simply 16 p.c of engineers had been girls and 16 p.c of underrepresented college students of coloration — Hispanic, Black, and American Indian or Indigenous Alaskan people — had been employed in science and engineering occupations with at the least a bachelor’s diploma. 

Angely Mejia Martinez, a rising junior at Chelsea Excessive College and aspiring physician, highlighted Jameel Clinic chair and MIT Institute Professor Phillip Sharp’s discuss as one in every of her favorites. Sharp spoke about rising up on a small farm in rural Kentucky earlier than setting off on his profession in science, which ultimately led to his 1993 Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medication. “I actually received impressed by that as a result of once I was little, many individuals would say ‘I don’t suppose you are able to do this,’ and I used to be at all times like ‘I can do that,’” Martinez says. “I feel I can obtain something I set my thoughts into.” 

“It was very surreal as a result of I didn’t suppose I’d be right here,” Priyani Rawal, a rising junior finding out info know-how at Essex North Shore Agricultural and Technical College, says. Rawal’s favourite class was Barzilay’s Intro to AI/ML lecture. “I used to be so amazed by what we had been studying … it made me impressed to enter [the machine learning] subject.” 

Adam Nouri, a rising senior at Pioneer Constitution College II, signed up for this system after receiving an e mail from his pc science instructor. Earlier than making use of, Nouri had thought-about enrolling in a summer season course for programming at Bunker Hill Neighborhood School, an choice sometimes supplied for free of charge to Pioneer college students. Nonetheless, Nouri rapidly realized that free enrollment was solely out there throughout the college 12 months and says it will have price round $800 for him to enroll in the summertime. If he hadn’t gotten into the Jameel Clinic Summer time Program, Nouri believes he would have continued working at his part-time service job for the remainder of the summer season whereas attempting to code a sport or construct a pc together with his mates in his free time. “After I received into the [Jameel Clinic Summer Program], I used to be really actually excited,” Nouri remembers. “Now I really feel like I’ve a clearer path I wish to pursue.” 

As a part of their closing group venture displays given on the final day of this system, college students had been assigned AI instruments utilized in scientific settings or drug discovery, like PathAI or AlphaFold2, and requested to clarify their assigned instrument together with its potential advantages and dangers to a audience of their alternative. 

“There’s a heavy emphasis positioned not solely on innovation in science, well being care and know-how, but additionally on collaboration throughout disciplines,” Jay Ananth, a rising junior at Troy Excessive College, says. “Through the summer season program, I used to be taught AI and well being care not as a highschool pupil, however as a peer — a fellow researcher — who has the flexibility to innovate and make a change.” 

Serena Hu, a rising junior at Lincoln Sudbury Excessive College, felt much less uncertainty about her future after attending this system. “I at all times wished to strive new issues in order that I might discover one thing that I like to do, however I can fairly confidently say that I discovered it right here,” Hu says. “They’re not simply educating you the fabric — they’re additionally inspiring you.” 

The Jameel Clinic Summer time Program was organized by Ignacio Fuentes, Alex Ouyang, and Marinalva Smith. Maggie Wang, Antonella Catanzaro, and Ciarra Brodie helped to supervise and contribute to the success of this system. Instructors included Pulkit Agrawal, Sharifa Alghowinem, Shrooq Alsenan, Manisha Bahl, Regina Barzilay, Rebecca Boiarsky, Felix Faltings, Florian Fintelmann, Marzyeh Ghassemi, Susan Hockfield, Insoo Hyun, Noah Jones, Ila Kumar, Peter Mikhael, Carles Monterrubio, Tiffany Pereira Portela, Phillip Sharp, Hannes Stärk, Vinith Suriyakumar, Oliver Thiel, Randi Williams, Jeremy Wohlwend, and Rachel Wu.

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