Artificial Intelligence (AI) is currently trending as a keyword in our daily lives as well as in industries such as manufacturing, healthcare, retail and finance, and this has led to the emergence of newly coined words like smart factory, self-driving cars, and robo-advisors. Due to this recent trend, the demand for corporations to apply smart technology is growing at an explosive rate, but there are not enough AI specialists to meet this demand.
In order to bridge this gap, POSCO Group University and POSTECH (Pohang University of Science and Technology) will set out to build an AI ecosystem by nurturing AI specialists and conducting joint research. On February 28, POSCO Group University and POSTECH Information Research Laboratories (PIRL) signed an agreement to work on building a training program for in-house AI specialists in POSCO Group and to promote overall collaboration. Young-joo Seo, the head of PIRL, said, “We will invite the best in AI to train researchers at corporations and produce AI specialists within a short period of time. This will hopefully strengthen the competitiveness of companies and of this country.”
PIRL was founded in 1991 to conduct research on cutting-edge information and communications technology (ICT). It opened an office in Pangyo last October to conduct research and begin the commercialization of AI and big data; it has also successfully supported startups in related fields.
POSTECH has been a leader in research by showcasing its strengths in AI and big data. It is expected to lead innovation in Korea’s industrial circles by developing AI-based technologies, conducting research, nurturing AI specialists, and making full use of and applying other related technologies in the field. Aside from POSCO Group, POSTECH has also worked with other companies to train specialists and conduct joint research. It plans to create and provide customized training programs for each corporation.
With this agreement, POSCO Group University will be in charge of launching related training programs and beginner courses for POSCO Group and its affiliates, while PIRL will be in charge of developing content for basic and advanced courses to increase people’s understanding of AI, big data, programming, pattern recognition, machine learning, natural language processing, and computer vision. It is the first time that a university in Korea is providing a program to train AI specialists, especially for corporations, and will serve as a significant milestone in expanding cooperation between companies and academic institutions, a fitting move in the era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
Currently, 59 people have completed the beginner course with the POSCO AI program. For the basic and advanced course, 15 employees from POSCO and 10 employees from POSCO affiliates will be selected to participate. If participants successfully pass the four-month group training, task performance course, and six-month advanced course, they will be selected as AI specialists and experience a chance to work in the field.
In order to better equip POSCO Group employees to respond to changes at the group level and increase their awareness on AI, POSCO Group University will add a three-session beginner course. In addition, an AI training course will be available for POSCO executives during the first half of this year.