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Miami Dade College to Open New Cutting-Edge AI Center

Miami Dade College will host a ribbon-cutting ceremony Sept. 20 for a new AI Center to host AI classes, workshops, quantum computing labs, multi-use spaces and a “design-thinking room” for collaborative projects.

Miami Dade College Kendall campus
Miami Dade College (MDC) is opening a new Artificial Intelligence Center to prepare tomorrow’s AI workforce through a slew of new classes, workshops and lectures, a recent announcement said. According to a news release, the 13,000-square-foot center, located on the second floor of Building 1 on the college’s North Campus, will serve as an epicenter for activities, curriculum and software designed to support MDC’s growth in the field.

“We are so proud to open the doors to MDC’s AI Center, where students and the community can gain the critical skills to ascend within the current job market,” MDC President Madeline Pumariega said in the announcement, which noted that a ribbon-cutting ceremony will take place on Sept. 20. “The fast evolution of technology has increased the demand for trained AI professionals across virtually every industry. MDC is leading the way to fill that gap.”

The news release said visitors will be greeted by a holographic concierge powered by IBM’s Watson AI software that assists with directions and provides information upon entering the new center. It added that the center will include a robotics lab, classrooms, quantum computing labs, multi-use spaces and a “design-thinking room” for research and collaborative projects.

The announcement noted that the vision for the center was a product of a strategic partnership with industry giants including Microsoft, Intel and IBM, and was spurred by demand for AI professionals in today’s tech workforce. It added that the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects 513,000 new jobs — titles such as AI software developer, machine learning engineer and robotics scientist — will be created in the AI field by 2029 in industries such as health care, manufacturing, cybersecurity, retail construction, supply chain management, business information technology, education and transportation.

The launch of the center comes after increased investments in Florida higher education institutions to expand AI programming, such as a partnership between the University of Florida and tech company NVIDIA to further develop AI research and education, and $100 million from the state for a University of Florida technology campus in West Palm Beach.

According to the announcement, Miami Dade has allocated $5 million to construct the AI Center, and it received several grants from the Knight Foundation, National Science Foundation and the Miami Downtown Development Authority to help finance the creation of degrees and professional development programs centering on AI.

The funding has supported several existing initiatives that will now be incorporated in the AI Center, including the development of certification programs and associate and bachelor degrees in applied AI; the implementation of AI4ALL College Pathways, a nationwide initiative to expose every MDC student and faculty to AI regardless of discipline; AI high school programs to introduce the next generation to AI, such as the Mark Cuban Foundation AI Bootcamp; and a partnership with the Intel AI for Workforce Program to train faculty and incorporate Intel’s expertise into the AI curriculum.