Pictured at the launch of a new Master’s in Computer Science – Artificial Intelligence programme in NUI Galway are l-r: Caroline Cawley, CEO, ITAG, Paul Healy, Chief Executive, Skillnet Ireland, Minister of State for Higher Education, Mary Mitchell O’ Connor T.D. and Professor Michael Madden, School of Computer Science, NUI Galway.
The Minister of State with responsibility for Higher Education, Mary Mitchell O’Connor T.D. has today (Monday 20 May) launched a new Master’s in Computer Science – Artificial Intelligence programme in NUI Galway. The part-time Master’s was developed by Technology Ireland ICT Skillnet in collaboration with industry.
Over 60 people attended the event including representatives from 20 companies, several of which are based in the West Region and are engaged in new product development using AI technologies, with applications including: microprocessor design; semi-autonomous vehicles; face recognition; image analysis; customer engagement; financial analytics; cybersecurity, and many others.
The new two-year part-time programme will commence in September 2019 and will be delivered online. It is aimed at people currently working in industry in Ireland who wish to significantly deepen their computing skills through a specialisation in Artificial Intelligence.
Speaking at the launch, Minister of State for Higher Education Mary Mitchell O’Connor said: The Government is committed to making Ireland an AI island and will continue to support the teaching of these innovative programmes within higher education while also supporting industry needs by creating exciting new opportunities for innovation across all sectors.
“There are currently around 100,000 tech professionals working in Ireland with another 60,000 projected job openings over the next four years. The innovative Master’s programmes at NUI Galway will help to ensure graduates have the highest skills needed to meet this demand and to make Galway and the West of Ireland a leader in Artificial Intelligence.”
Paul Healy, Chief of Skillnet Ireland, commented: “Ireland is one of the tech capitals of the world. We are home to a growing array of dynamic indigenous Irish tech companies and the location of EMEA headquarters for many of the world’s leading tech firms. There is a growing need for greater numbers of highly qualified and competent engineers to work in these organisations. This industry-led online programme, which is supported by Skillnet Ireland and the students’ employer, will help ensure that we are producing engineers here in Ireland with the skills needed to become global leaders in AI technologies.”
Michael Madden, Professor of Computer Science, Head of Machine Learning and Data Mining at NUI Galway, says: “Within NUI Galway, we have a 20-year track record of research and teaching in machine learning and AI, in the Data Science Institute and right across the School of Computer Science. In the two new Master’s programmes, students will learn about all of the latest advances in these areas, benefiting from research-led teaching. All students will be required to study Ethics in AI, because we recognise the important ethical issues that can arise in modern AI applications. And all students will put their knowledge into practice by engaging in substantial capstone projects, conducting research and building prototype systems that use leading-edge AI technologies.”
Intake from companies for the part-time online programme will be managed through Technology Ireland ICT Skillnet and the students entering will have their fees paid by their company, with part-funding by Technology Ireland ICT Skillnet.
For further information about the new Master’s programme, visit: www.ictskillnet.ie/training/msc-in-computer-science-artificial-intelligence.