How to participate in UF’s AI Days, Oct. 16-20

Two people using VR headsets.


Students, faculty, and staff are invited to participate in the University of Florida’s second annual AI Days from Oct. 16 to 20. AI Days are one component of UF’s larger push to engage the entire campus around AI and its potential and will include a number of immersive events, including a poster board session, panel discussions and a hackathon. The event is free and open to the UF community and will be held in the Reitz Union ballroom. 

“Because AI is being used in every conceivable discipline, we believe that AI is an important tool for all students,” said David Reed, associate provost for strategic initiatives and director of the (AI)^2 Center.

Highlights of AI Day events will include: 

Gator Tank

Hosted by the Warrington College of Business, the pitch competition, called Gator Tank, is designed to help students launch and grow businesses that leverage AI. 

“The goal of Gator Tank is to provide student teams with the opportunity to pitch their AI ideas, receive advice and feedback from judges and mentors, and for a select few, win prize money to invest into the endeavor,” said Jamie Kraft, director of the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Center. “The hope is that we are creating the next generation of technical entrepreneurs who will develop solutions that will positively impact the world.”

The top three competition winners—those who represent the best potential for growth and for attracting outside financing—will receive grand prize money, with first place winners receiving $10,000 for their venture, second place winners receiving $6,000 and third place winners receiving $4,000. The Entrepreneurship and Innovation Center will offer mentoring and various other helpful resources along the way. 

Students, faculty and staff are invited to watch the pitch competition finalists and award celebration at 9:30 to 11 a.m. on Oct. 16 in the Reitz Union Ballroom. 

Gator Hack

Hosted by Verizon, the Gator Hack Competition is a 48-hour contest that provides an opportunity for all students to develop a solution with emphasis on AI. 

Starting on Oct. 13 at 5 p.m. at Marston Science Library, teams of students will be given a problem and data set —  provided by Verizon — and challenged to design and develop a solution to the problem.

"This is a fun, exciting, pressure-filled learning experience as students will only have 48 hours to develop a solution,” said Sanethia Thomas, assistant instructional professor in the Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering.  

Students will have a chance to win from multiple categories from the $20,000 prize pool.

Generative AI and Arts

AI Day’s newest competition for artists, designers, musicians, writers, performers, architects, and other creatives to showcase the possibilities of generative artwork. The top 20 outstanding submissions will be featured in a digital exhibition on Oct. 16 from 2:15 to 3:45 p.m.

“The range of work can be from still image production, to motion video, to generative text, to spatial design, to real-time interaction and many other forms of creative production, all of which are being radically transformed by new technologies,” said Associate Professor Jack Stenner. “We’re excited to see how students leverage AI to further their research and look forward to their development as creative individuals.”

This competition aims to celebrate the boundless possibilities of generative art and showcase the talents of students who harness the power of algorithms, code, and computational processes to create mesmerizing artworks.

Faculty panel discussions

Faculty across all disciplines will be leading discussions on AI in their respective fields in the Reitz Union Ballroom. Starting at 9 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 17 and going through Wednesday, presentations will be given on topics including K-12 education, law and policy, technology, and business and how AI has been influencing these areas by more than 60 panelists. 

Poster presentations

To highlight the incredibly diverse research using AI across campus, AI Days is featuring a poster presentation. All undergraduates, graduate students, postdocs, staff, and faculty can present a poster. Presentations from any and all disciplines will be showcased, including posters on the pedagogy of AI in your discipline from 4 to 6 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 18.

Workforce development day

On Thursday, Oct. 19, a workforce development day hosted by the Career Connections Center will begin at 9:30 a.m. in the Reitz Union Ballroom to equip students for the AI-enabled workforce. The event includes panels on how to use AI to get a job with interview questions and improving their resumes. Students can also receive a free headshot. 

Blake Trauschke October 5, 2023