“Tech Square pushed the boundaries of Georgia Tech,” Kurfess said. “It’s kind of the same – we’re on the fringes. I think in five or 10 years, AMPF will be the same kind of juggernaut as Tech Square, making a difference in society. People will look back at right now and think, ‘It was a crazy time at Georgia Tech.’
And, just as Tech Square has expanded campus boundaries, GA-AIM has the ability to expand Georgia Tech’s impact on the state.
“In addition to being a major research institute, Georgia Tech and the College of Engineering are focused on workforce development,” said Raheem Beyah, dean of the College and Southern Company Chair. “Sometimes it lags behind research. With GA-AIM, Georgia Tech now has the funds to link workforce development with AI research – and create a new generation of engineers and technicians – to help all of Georgia.
Stebner agreed, as he sees GA-AIM as a way to solve some of the state-related issues with AI manufacturing and manpower. For example, rural businesses tell him that machine vision positions often take years to fill. The company doesn’t know how to train workers in its local community, and the people of Atlanta don’t want to leave town.
“The state needs people in rural areas, and rural communities need them,” Stebner said. “We will create programs that train the trainer where he lives. And on campus, with a focus on building an autonomously capable facility at AI-MPF, GA-AIM gives Georgia Tech a national and global resource to create breakthroughs in how AI is used and how it advances manufacturing over the next few decades, if not more.