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Yesterday, MIT announced that they are investing $1 billion for establishing a new college for computing: MIT Schwarzman College of Computing. This college is named after Mr. Schwarzman, the chairman, CEO and co-founder of Blackstone who has contributed $350 million for the college.The college will be dedicated for work in computer science, AI, data science, and related fields.

This initiative, according to MIT, is the single largest investment in computing and AI by any American academic institution. MIT Schwarzman College of Computing aims to teach students the foundations of computing. Students will also learn how machine learning and data science can be applied in real life. A curriculum will be designed to satisfy the growing interest in majors that cross computer science with other disciplines.

Along with teaching advanced computing, the school will also focus on teaching and researching on relevant policy and ethics. This will educate students about responsibly using these advanced technologies in support of the greater good.

Rafael Reif, MIT President, believes that this college will help students and researchers from various disciplines to use computing and AI to advance their disciplines:

“As computing reshapes our world, MIT intends to help make sure it does so for the good of all. In keeping with the scope of this challenge, we are reshaping MIT. The MIT Schwarzman College of Computing will constitute both a global center for computing research and education, and an intellectual foundry for powerful new AI tools. Just as important, the College will equip students and researchers in any discipline to use computing and AI to advance their disciplines and vice-versa, as well as to think critically about the human impact of their work.”

To attract distinguished individuals from other universities, government, industry, and journalism, the school plans to offer various opportunities. These include selective undergraduate research opportunities, graduate fellowships in ethics and AI, a seed-grant program for faculty, and a fellowship program. Along with these exciting opportunities, fifty new faculty positions will be created, out of which 25 will be appointed to advance computing in the college, and the other 25 will be appointed jointly in the college and departments across MIT.

Currently, they have raised a total funding of $650 million of the $1 billion required for the college and its senior administration is actively looking for more contributors. Among the top partners in this initiative is IBM. Ginni Rometty, IBM chairman, president, and CEO, said:

“As MIT’s partner in shaping the future of AI, IBM is excited by this new initiative. The establishment of the MIT Schwarzman College of Computing is an unprecedented investment in the promise of this technology. It will build powerfully on the pioneering research taking place through the MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab. Together, we will continue to unlock the massive potential of AI and explore its ethical and economic impacts on society.”

MIT Schwarzman College of Computing is one of the most significant structural change to MIT since the early 1950s. According to the official announcement, the college is likely to open in September, next year and the construction work is scheduled to complete in 2022.

To read the full announcement, head over to MIT’s official website.

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