Artificial Intelligence (AI) is an exciting and evolving field, and the demand for diverse talent with machine learning and data science skills is increasing. To celebrate International Women’s Day on March 8th, IntelliDyne’s Data Scientist, Jenny Glenski, will be speaking at Teens in AI’s annual global #GirlsInAI2021 Hackathon to help hundreds of girls and young people from underrepresented communities (LGBTQIA+) aged 12-18 learn about the potential for Artificial Intelligence to change the world for good. More information and registration details can be found here.
Throughout the weeklong hackathon, women in technology will mentor teams of students as they design, develop, and pitch their own products using AI to address one of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Challenges. The mentors aim to help students get comfortable with exploring new ideas, making mistakes, and following their curiosity. “I hope to model that learning is a lifelong project and that it’s ok not to know everything, because not knowing the answer right away is not a barrier to success,” says Jenny. While the mentors will also serve as a technical resource for students during the hackathon, Jenny sees her primary role to be one of encouragement and support; “My goal is to build girls’ confidence in their ability to solve problems and persevere through difficult tasks.”
The benefits of participating in the hackathon extend to everyone involved, as mentorship activities reward the mentor as well. Jenny notes, “I’m looking forward to learning from the students and other inspiring speakers about how they feel about Artificial Intelligence and what they find interesting! It’s a great opportunity to see where the field may be heading, while helping to build a more diverse culture in Artificial Intelligence.” As an added benefit, Jenny has noticed that her past speaking and mentoring activities have helped build her confidence in leading teams and strengthened her empathetic leadership skills, which helps her be more effective in her work at IntelliDyne.
Ultimately, this hackathon will be a great opportunity for young people to link their personal interests to uses of Artificial Intelligence, and inspire them to pursue a career in AI. It’s valuable to show young girls that they can apply AI to solve problems in a wide range of fields that they are interested in, so they don’t necessarily need to choose a career in another field over technology. Sharing a broader view of what a career in Artificial Intelligence can look like can help a young girl envision a future for herself in technology. Having adults other than a young person’s parents believe in them and support them can also be a big boost to their confidence. As Jenny shares, “by showing these young girls that these amazing, successful women believe in them, I hope they internalize that they belong in the world of Artificial Intelligence too and have the power to change their communities with their ideas.”
About the Organizers
“Teens In AI exists to increase diversity and inclusion in artificial intelligence. We aim to democratize AI and create opportunities for underrepresented talent that give young people aged 12-18 early exposure to AI for social good. Our vision is for AI to be developed by a diverse group of thinkers and doers advancing AI for humanity’s benefit.”