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UF- AI and Technology Initiatives

UF- AI and Technology Initiatives

UF advancing its artificial intelligence initiative

Moving forward on its sweeping vision to transform the future of education through artificial intelligence (AI), the University of Florida is collaborating with technology company NVIDIA to acquire the world’s most advanced AI system to boost the performance of UF’s powerful supercomputer.

UF will be the country’s first higher education institution to acquire the new NVIDIA DGX™ A100 — the world’s most advanced AI system.

The new systems mark a significant step in the university’s bold initiative to become a national leader in the application of AI, an expansive plan that will elevate UF in research, teaching and economic development. The initiative includes a commitment from UF to hire 100 faculty members specifically focused on AI, in addition to the 500 new faculty hired across disciplines — many of whom will integrate AI into their teaching and research. UF is also embarking on a unique plan to infuse AI across academic majors, creating a next generation AI-enabled workforce and democratizing a technology that has the potential to solve some of the globe’s most formidable challenges.

Better Patient Care for a Stronger Community

Have you interacted with a nurse lately? Did you receive excellent care from that nurse? That extra-special care may have been impacted by a health care training software developed by Shadow Health.

The local company was cofounded in 2011 by Benjamin Lok, Ph.D., a professor in the University of Florida Department of Computer & Information Science & Engineering; along with David Massias, CEO, and Aaron Kotranza, Ph.D., CTO, with the goal of teaching nursing students how to communicate effectively by using technology researched and developed at UF.

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UF nursing students use the software, which provides a comfortable and safe environment where nurses can practice, make mistakes, and learn to improve their conversation skills. An important and intentional feature of the system is the varied nature of virtual patients.

“We have a whole village of virtual patients from different socioeconomic backgrounds, cultures, ethnicities, and races. Our patients have varying perspectives on gender, sexuality, mental health, religion, just like real patients,” Dr. Lok said. “We tried to figure out the best way to represent the real-world interactions these nurses would be having.”

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr. Lok estimates that hundreds of thousands of nursing students in the U.S. and Canada have been able to continue their education because of Shadow Health. The company has grown to a team of over 120 members, with a majority working in Gainesville.

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