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Artificial Intelligence @ Dawson

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and related technologies are spreading rapidly, impacting the labour market and generating major transformations in the workforce. Along with these changes come ethical and social issues that will need to be tackled, sooner or later. According to a recent report released by the World Economic Forum on The Future of Jobs, technological breakthroughs such as high-speed mobile internet, machine learning, augmented and virtual reality, big-data analytics, and cloud technology will be spearheading companies’ adoption of new technologies between 2018 and 2022.  Furthermore, according to the same report, “in purely quantitative terms, 75 million current job roles may be displaced by the shift in the division of labour between humans, machines and algorithms, while 133 million new job roles may emerge at the same time.”

The education sector is mobilizing to identify the many challenges and opportunities that the proliferation of AI presents. Dawson College is well-positioned to make substantive contributions to this enterprise and to fill an important role in the burgeoning AI ecosystem. Regardless of program of study, all of our students will graduate into a rapidly evolving economy driven by powerful, pervasive and somewhat nebulous technologies The pace and scale of change makes the exact future that awaits them is difficult to predict.

However, as a community and through a variety of approaches and a wide range of initiatives, Dawson College aims to revolutionize college education and better prepare the leaders of tomorrow. We will not delegate this responsibility to undergraduate or graduate studies. Groundbreaking technologies offer great rewards to those who learn to master them, but equally dire consequences to those swept along in the tide of change without a basic understanding of the landscape. Dawson College is in a unique position to influence how the CEGEP network ultimately decides to address this turning point in economic history.

How to get involved

The AI initiative at Dawson is cross-disciplinary and multi-faceted and there is a myriad of ways to get involved.  If you are faculty, there will be regular calls for proposals for research and teaching fellowships.  There is also a Community of Practice that meets a couple of times per month that is open to all.  For those looking to influence the direction of the initiative itself, there is an AI task force composed of members of the Dawson community, which aims to have representation from across the college.  For more information, contact the DawsonAI Project Manager, Joel Trudeau, at jtrudeau@dawsoncollege.qc.ca.

There will also be AI Events often organized and hosted by the AI Teaching and Research Fellows.  The calendar of events will display below when there are upcoming events scheduled.

Call for Teaching Fellows

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Given the need to prepare our students for the pivotal role that artificial intelligence (AI) will play in both their personal and professional lives, it is important for numerous faculty members to be aware of and, when possible, incorporate in their curriculum the ways in which AI will impact their respective field.

With these goals in mind, Dawson College has instituted a multidisciplinary AI-themed community of practice consisting of faculty members who are committed to developing pedagogical material on AI-related themes and vulgarizing new AI developments to the larger Dawson community.  The selected fellows, who will be granted a section of release during the Fall 2021, will have to attend bi-weekly meetings, mentor each other, share readings as well as other pedagogical material, and incorporate the developed material in one or more courses offered by their department (preferably) during the Winter 2022 term.

Moreover, in addition to creating and sharing a portfolio of their work on the Dawson.AI website, each fellow will have to give a talk or lead a workshop on their AI-related knowledge (either independently or in partnership with other fellows) during at least two conferences or events open to the larger Dawson community and held during the academic year 2021-2022.

THE CALL FOR FELLOWS IS NOW CLOSED.

The call for applicants to join the third cohort of fellows of the AI-Themed Teaching Community of Practice is now open.  Interested faculty are invited to apply by filling out the following form before March 10th: http://bit.ly/AI-TeachingFellow-F2021

Here are the selection criteria:

  1. Concrete plan to develop pedagogical material on AI-related themes that will be incorporated in at least one of the courses offered by your department (preferably) during the Winter 2022 term;
  2. Explicit (even if tentative) plan to bring the newly acquired knowledge and expertise back to the larger Dawson community (e.g., by leading a PED Day workshop, organizing a public conference, or giving a talk during a SALTISE event, the Humanities and Public Life Conference or the Dawson.AI Speaker Series);
  3. Diversity of departments, backgrounds, and perspectives amongst the selected fellows;
  4. Overall merit of the application.

Please do not hesitate to email any questions you may have to Carl Saucier-Bouffard at cbouffard@dawsoncollege.qc.ca.

Recent Events

DawsonAI 2020 Speaker Series (November 11 & 13):

DawsonAI 2020 Speaker Series

Talk Descriptions



Last Modified: March 15, 2021