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UK Completes Eight-Week Google Applied Machine Learning Intensive

September 08, 2021

Corey Baker, assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science at UK, led the summer bootcamp.

Group photo of participants representing their various institutions.

Group photo of participants representing their various institutions.

This summer, undergraduate students representing 11 universities and colleges participated in a Google Applied Machine Learning Intensive (AMLI) at the University of Kentucky (UK).

Sponsored by the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering (NACME) and Google Education, the eight-week program exposed under-represented minority (URM) undergraduate students to advanced concepts in artificial intelligence and machine learning (ML) using Google Education’s open-sourced curriculum.

Corey Baker, assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science at UK, led the summer bootcamp in conjunction with faculty from partner institutions University of Arkansas and Morgan State University.

“It was a joy having the best and brightest students from around the country experience UK’s campus for 8 weeks. Our amazing group was made up of 41% women, 52% Black or African American, and 41% Hispanic/ Latino students.”

As ML becomes a powerful tool across industries from healthcare and retail to investment banking and insurance there is a growing need for a workforce that understands how to apply ML strategically and use ML models to collaborate with data scientists and engineers for maximum business impact. The eight-week ML curriculum gave students the strong computer science foundation they need to work with large datasets and solve real-world problems. Instructors dedicated classroom time to hands-on learning featuring faculty-supported, collaborative project work.

“Google AMLI provided me with a comprehensive, inclusive and engaging introduction to Machine Learning, a term I have often heard mentioned in Computer Science with a limited explanation of what is really occurring under the hood," said Elizabeth Eyeson, a computer science major at the University of Colorado in Boulder. "Google AMLI provided me with the 'how' behind this field of study and has broadened my interests in computer science.” 

The AMLI concluded with five final projects guided by UK graduate students. All of the final projects the AMLI students worked on can be found on GitHub. 

“By far, this past summer has been one of the most fulfilling chapters of my professional and personal life," said Tony Ramirez, a computer engineering senior at UK. "It was rigorous learning machine learning and often I felt overwhelmed with the workload, but it was so worth it. My coding skills and confidence grew each day. From all this, my favorite part was the friends I made and the support I had with the TA's, online instructors, and Dr. Baker."

The UK AMLI has received funding for two years. Participating students receive full room and board for the duration of the program, a travel stipend to cover arrival and departure costs and upper-level computer science elective course credit for completing the bootcamp.  

“The students completed daily lab assignments using Google Colab, finished capstone projects and interacted with Google ML research engineers, all while having fun, you can’t ask for a better summer experience.”

Students from the following institutions attended the program:

  • Berea College
  • Florida International
  • University of New Jersey Institute of Technology
  • Northeastern University
  • Stevens Institute of Technology
  • University of California Davis
  • University of Central Florida
  • University of Colorado at Boulder
  • University of Illinois at Urbana Champagne
  • University of Kentucky
  • University of Southern California

Learn more about the bootcamp here. 

Corey Baker (right)
Corey Baker (right)