Thursday, June 23, 2022

MATRIX AI Consortium enhancing diversity with second cohort of Xilinx fellows

MATRIX AI Consortium enhancing diversity with second cohort of Xilinx fellows

JUNE 22, 2022 — MATRIX: The UTSA AI Consortium for Human Well-Being is building on its commitment to reducing barriers faced by minority groups entering the AI field with a second cohort of Xilinx-MATRIX AI Fellows. Funded by Xilinx’s Women in Technology (WIT) Programs, the award aims to increase the representation, participation and entrepreneurial abilities of women in technology-focused careers.

Comprised of diverse local, national and international AI and machine learning researchers, the consortium is dedicated to conducting transformative research in the design, use and deployment of AI to enhance human life.

Funding from Xilinx will also go toward stipends and the purchase of state-of-the-art hardware for MATRIX: AI’s DIY space in the new UTSA School of Data Science.


“I want to develop myself in this field and encourage more females who have the same interest but hesitate to step in because of any reason.”



Fellows participate in a variety of programming, including the MATRIX AI seminar series and workshops intended to build collaborative mentorship relationships with female AI scientists. They also look forward to using their experience in the program to help usher the generations of women after them into the tech industry.

“I want to develop myself in this field and encourage more females who have the same interest but hesitate to step in because of any reason,” said one Xilinx-MATRIX AI fellow, Xiaoyun Liang.


The fellows are:

  • Xiaoyun Liang, civil engineering – construction track, advisor: Jiannin Cai
  • Aisha M. Bah, computer science, advisor: Dhireesha Kudithipudi
  • Clarisse Cabagay, computer science, advisor: Hongjie Xie
  • Celeste Gutierrez Ramirez, computer science, advisor: Gabriela Ciocarlie
  • Heila Shahidi, computer science, advisor: Amanda Fernandez
  • Fatima Tuz Zohora, electrical engineering, advisor: Dhireesha Kudithipudi

As director of the MATRIX: AI Consortium, Kudithipudi is focused on cultivating an inclusive AI workforce. Kudithipudi ensures this through various outreach efforts, including her role as an advisor for Project Lovelace, a program offering opportunities for young women in STEM fields to engage in research and participate in workshops. 


EXPLORE FURTHER

Kudithipudi said she is grateful that Xilinx continues to support the MATRIX: AI Consortium to enhance gender diversity of the AI workforce pipeline.

UTSA is a Tier One research university and a Hispanic Serving Institution specializing in cyber, health, fundamental futures, and social-economic transformation.  UTSA aspires to become a model for student success, a great public research university, and an exemplar for strategic growth and innovative excellence.

Ari Castañeda



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