Spring is for Student-led Workshops

Throughout the semester, DI student fellows collaborated on workshops at the intersection of creativity and cutting edge technology.

Hack Your Homework & Imagination

Julian Leff, a sophomore computer information systems major, has long had an interest in ethical and practical applications of artificial intelligence. Before this semester, that interest was resigned to tinkering on his own. So, he wanted to create an opportunity for other curious students to explore AI.

“We're really riding the edge of a new technology, and it definitely has ramifications,” Leff said.

David Foster, a DI faculty fellow and associate professor in the School of Media and Journalism, led the first workshop, “Pixel Quest: An AI Image Challenge.”

Foster assisting student participants in workshop.

The workshop examined the role of AI in the creative field through a game-like environment. The following workshop, “Hack Your Imagination: Explore AI for Storytelling,” challenged participants to make a story in any medium using only AI.

In Foster’s opinion, AI will usher in a new era for creativity just as the smartphone did more than a decade ago. However, “the internet doesn’t abide by a code of ethics,” he said. To stay ahead of this, students and faculty must familiarize themselves with the technology.

“Understanding where AI has a place in society, they feel confident in saying, ‘This is my opinion, because I've worked with it in this context,’” Leff said.

Through their collaboration, Foster and Leff found perhaps an unlikely common ground as professor and student on the applications of AI in the classroom.

The final workshop, “Hack Your Homework: Explore AI for Productivity,” will take place just in time for finals at 6 p.m. on Monday, April 15 in the DI HUB. There, participants can learn how to use AI in preparation for their upcoming exams, including how to make a study guide.

Foster has no problem with that.

“There's no way that we can go into this age of AI and think that we're going to teach the same way that we taught in 1990,” he said.

Register for Hack your Homework


The Feminine Urge to Inspire

For women’s history month, Anna Leitson, a sophomore integrated mathematics major, wanted to create an outlet for those passionate about women’s rights and history. So, she co-created the workshop “The Feminine Urge to Inspire” with another DI student fellow, Breanna Lowery.

“I just want women to know that they have other strong females around them,” Leitson said.

For the workshop, participants used the dye sublimation printer to create vision boards made from fabric based on women in history, innovation and the women who inspire them in their lives. On the back of their board, participants wrote their goals and passions.

DI Student Fellows Leitson and Lowery presenting during workshop

Leitson plans to assemble the boards into one quilt, with the hope of displaying it in the DI HUB gallery.

“Every woman, every little girl, has her own goals,” Leitson said. “You cannot compare them. Every girl wants to do something different.”

POSTED: Monday, April 15, 2024 11:42 AM
Updated: Monday, April 15, 2024 01:50 PM
Alton Northup
Rami Daud & Kedron Trapp