AI for Business: USC Marshall and USC Viterbi Announce Joint Undergraduate Degree – USC Viterbi


USC Marshall School of Business and USC Viterbi School of Engineering Launch New Joint Undergraduate Degree, Artificial intelligence for business. This innovative degree brings together the expertise of two of the nation’s top business and engineering schools to provide a unique education for students entering Fall 2023.

“We knew there was a huge need in the marketplace and across society for students who are business educated but also understand how AI works, what machine learning means and are ready to take on the implications. ethics of these technologies,” Ramandeep said. Randhawa, Associate Dean of Undergraduate Programs and Professor of Data Science and Operations. The high demand for talent with these skills is evident from recruiters and senior leaders across different industries, Randhawa said.

Kimon Drakopoulos, Robert R. Dockson Assistant Professor of Business Administration and Assistant Professor of Data Science and Operations, is expected to be the program’s first director. He shared that timing is critical: “The current challenge for AI is wide adoption. To achieve this in a socially beneficial way, well-rounded and competent leaders are desperately needed.

AI expert Yolanda Gil, who was president of the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI), and who is director of new initiatives in AI and data science at USC Viterbi and professor research in computer science, will co-lead the program.

“This is a pioneering and forward-looking interdisciplinary program,” said Gil, “to our knowledge, it is the first in the world of its type at this important intersection of AI and business. This aligns with our school’s emphasis on what we call “Engineering+”. We believe engineering is an enabling discipline. With this program, we will empower business and organizational leaders to understand possibilities, as well as limitations, of AI technologies and help them better understand the people they serve, predict trends, and improve decision-making processes.Graduates will have unique abilities to assess the potential of emerging ideas in AI and how to harness them efficiently and responsibly.

The joint AI for Business degree is the first that USC Viterbi will offer with two school names in the degree, reflecting the true interdisciplinary nature of the program. It will be a four-year, 128-unit program with courses in both Marshall and Viterbi. For example, students will take both basic business courses at Marshall and AI-focused courses at Viterbi with additional new integration courses.

USC Viterbi courses will cover machine learning, human interactions, robotics, and programming in Python. As part of the degree requirements, students will also study Security and Privacy and Ethics for Engineers at USC Viterbi.

The integrative classes to be developed will provide a broader context for making business decisions in the age of AI. These four courses, created within Marshall specifically for the joint degree, include a semester-long program for freshmen, as well as courses in digital transformation, AI and smart contracts, technology strategy, and a program that will provide students with real life experiences in the AI ​​industry.

“We’ve reached a point where AI tools and techniques are extremely precise, but real-world high-impact applications are very limited,” Drakopoulos said. “The new AI for Business degree is designed to develop leaders who fill this void – impact-driven professionals who will be exposed to a unique blend of business, technical, ethics and leadership courses and who will also be able from asking the right questions to generating the right answers.We will be one of the few universities in the world where students will have the opportunity to develop their technical, business and leadership skills to pursue careers in one of the sectors at the fastest growing technology sector.

“By offering unique partnerships with other forward-thinking USC schools, Marshall increases its value, breaks down silos, and unlocks true collaborative, multidisciplinary learning. This degree best exemplifies our drive at Marshall to innovate and create a cutting-edge program,” Randhawa said.

The new degree in AI for Business is part of a suite of interdisciplinary data science degree programs offered by USC Viterbi. Indeed, the school has joint data science programs with the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, the Price School for Public Policy, and Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences. The new degree will also complement an existing combined Viterbi and Marshall undergraduate degree in computer science and business administration.

Posted on September 9, 2022

Last updated September 9, 2022


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