SUU Professor Receives Grant to Develop "Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning" Certificate

Published: August 21, 2023 | Author: Lawrence Mbaki | Read Time: 2 minutes

Dr. Masoud MalekzadehAssistant professor of civil engineering at Southern Utah University, Dr. Masoud Malekzadeh, was awarded a new grant award from the Utah System of Higher Education (USHE) in collaboration with their Deep Technology Advisory Council and Talent Ready Utah. 

Dr. Malekzadeh was awarded $367,113 for a project that will result in the creation of a stackable certificate in “Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning for Engineering Applications” that aims to better prepare students to be workforce participants in engineering-related positions that require a background in artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), as well as advanced sensing technologies (AST).

“This project is so timely,” said Dr. Jeffrey Miller, dean of the College of Engineering and Computational Sciences. “It will allow students to gain the knowledge necessary to succeed in the current technological landscape in the world.”

SUU students who graduate with this certificate will have a competitive advantage in the job market due to close relations with industry partners, including SkyWest Airlines, Ram Aviation, and InnovaTech, whom Dr. Malekzadeh collaborated with on this project. These partners will offer students invaluable internship opportunities and practical experience applying AI, ML, and AST in real-world scenarios. 

“Witnessing the transformation of our students into skilled professionals empowered with AI and ML knowledge will be truly gratifying,” said Dr. Malekzadeh. He also noted that the recognition and validation received through this award will elevate the reputation of SUU as a leader in providing cutting-edge education in AI and ML. 

Although his initial proposal for this certificate was denied last year, Dr. Malekzadeh didn’t give up hope. He worked with Peter Reed of Talent Ready Utah to obtain reviewer comments and further strategized with research administrators Jenn Stewart and Katie Freeman from the Sponsored Programs, Agreements, Research and Contracts (SPARC) office to determine how to revise and strengthen his application for the subsequent application deadline. 

“Artificial intelligence and machine learning are such important skills for so many programs that will provide our students with many additional professional opportunities they wouldn’t otherwise have,” said Dr. Miller. “Dr. Malekzadeh has the expertise and drive to build a successful program.” 

For more information on the details and progress of this new certificate, you can reach out to Dr. Malekzadeh at malekzadeh@suu.eduContact the SUU SPARC Office to receive assistance for faculty, staff, and administrators seeking external funding for their projects and programs, from concept development and planning through implementation and management of funded projects.

Tags: SPARC FacStaff Faculty Engineering

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