Penn Engineering Leads in AI: Announces First Ivy League Master’s in Artificial Intelligence

Pictures of people working on computers The University of Pennsylvania School of Engineering and Applied Science introduces its online Master of Science in Engineering (MSE) in Artificial Intelligence (AI) degree, the first graduate program of its kind among Ivy League universities. 

As a catalyst for disruptive innovation, artificial intelligence is upending nearly every field and transforming how humans interact with technology and do their jobs. In this fast-changing environment, master’s-trained AI engineers with a deep understanding of AI technologies — and their risks and rewards — are increasingly in demand. 

The Raj and Neera Singh Program in Artificial Intelligence Master of Science in Engineering in AI Online will empower students with both the practical skills and the ethical foundations to lead AI into the future. Building on the expertise of the School’s world-class faculty, the program will equip students with the mathematical and algorithmic foundation to develop groundbreaking AI systems along with the broad perspective to deploy new technologies in an ethical and responsible way. 

Equipping graduates for the future of technology

The MSE in Artificial Intelligence curriculum will offer advanced coursework in natural language processing, machine learning, deep learning, statistics and related topics. Faculty experts with extensive experience in GPU-accelerated computing will provide students with leading-edge courses, invaluable insights and practical knowledge in harnessing the power of GPUs for AI applications. Additionally, an in-depth course in AI ethics, a focal point of the program, will provide students with the tools they need to make responsible decisions that benefit society as a whole. 

“The emergence of rapidly evolving AI technologies like generative AI is creating both opportunities and challenges for humanity,” says Vijay Kumar, Nemirovsky Family Dean of Penn Engineering. “Our new master’s program meets a critical need for AI engineers with advanced degrees who can harness the power of these transformative technologies in positive and beneficial ways.”

The MSE program will be led by Chris Callison-Burch, Associate Professor in Computer and Information Science at Penn Engineering and a prominent expert in the field of AI. 

“AI is one of the most important areas in technology today. It’s generating an incredible amount of enthusiasm and a massive amount of investment,” says Callison-Burch. “With this program, our goal is to educate a new generation of engineers who have the skills to analyze trends as they emerge — not only from the technological perspective, but also from the societal and ethical perspective.”

Designed for the next generation of AI engineers

The online MSE in AI at Penn Engineering has been designed to make an Ivy League education accessible to motivated students across the world. The program will offer courses through an asynchronous model that allows students to learn on their own time, at their own pace. Course modules are recorded in a state-of-the-art, professional studio and tailored specifically for an online audience of busy professionals in multiple time zones, expanding the program’s reach to an audience of global student learners.

Rebecca Hayward, Executive Director of Penn Engineering Online, underscores, “The instructors teaching within our AI master’s program are selected from among the most research-active faculty working in this field, a necessity given the fast-changing landscape of AI.” 

In addition to Callison-Burch, notable program instructors include machine learning experts Pratik Chaudhari, Hamed Hassani and Victor Preciado, as well as Susan Davidson and Tessa Cook, both of whom are world-renowned researchers working at the intersection of big data, AI, and applications in bioinformatics and medicine where AI will play a significant role. More details about the AI curriculum and a full list of courses are available on the program’s website

“Our AI master’s program was also designed with technical rigor as a central focus,” says Boon Thau Loo, RCA Professor in Computer and Information Science and Associate Dean for Graduate Programs in Penn Engineering. “Students will not only learn about the algorithms and models underpinning AI applications, they will also be equipped with the latest knowledge on the data center infrastructures that are powering the AI revolution, namely distributed systems, networking and GPU programming.”

The first cohort of students in the MSE in Artificial Intelligence program will start classes in spring 2025, with applications opening on June 3, 2024. Applicants will need an undergraduate degree in Computer Science, Computer Engineering or an equivalent degree to ensure that they are adequately prepared for the rigor and depth of study required to excel in this program.

To learn more about the application process, please visit the website.