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Preparing Engineers for the Future: Project Management for Developing Generative AI

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2023 Fall Mid Atlantic Conference: Meeting our students where they are and getting them where they need to be


Ewing, New Jersey

Publication Date

October 27, 2023

Start Date

October 27, 2023

End Date

January 10, 2024

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Sakhi Aggrawal Purdue University at West Lafayette (PPI) Orcid 16x16

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Sakhi Aggrawal is a Graduate Research Fellow in Computer and Information Technology department at Purdue University. She completed her master’s degree in Business Analytics from Imperial College London and bachelor’s degree in Computer and Information Technology and Organizational Leadership from Purdue University. She worked in industry for several years with her latest jobs being as project manager at Google and Microsoft. Her research interests include: workforce development, engineering education, project management and teamwork. Her current research focuses on integrating project management processes in undergraduate education. Her main goal is to understand how work management and product development practices widely used in industry can be modified and adapted to streamline undergraduate STEM education.

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Kevin C. Dittman Purdue University at West Lafayette (COE)

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Kevin C. Dittman is an American computer scientist, IT consultant, and Professor
of Information Technology at Purdue University, especially known for his textbook Systems
Analysis and Design Methods written with Lonnie D. Bentley and Jeffrey L. Whitten, which is in
its 7th edition. He has been with Purdue University for twenty-eight years and is responsible for
teaching systems analysis and design, cybersecurity management, and project management
courses, at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. He has published numerous other
scholarly papers on systems analysis and design, and project management, has over 42 years of
industrial experience in the information technology field all relating to systems development,
project management, and cybersecurity, and has an active consulting practice. Professor
Dittman's current research and teaching interests are systems analysis and design processes and
techniques, software development quality and productivity methods, information systems project
management, and cybersecurity program governance.

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Project management skills are vital in preparing engineering students for today's dynamic landscape. Simultaneously, the field of generative artificial intelligence (AI) offers new opportunities in technology. This paper explores the intersection of teaching project management in engineering and the growing importance of managing generative AI projects. It discusses AI and generative AI, highlighting challenges faced by project managers, such as data quality, technical complexity, ethics, legal compliance, resource constraints, and scalability. To address these challenges, the paper recommends crucial skills for engineering students: forming multi-disciplinary teams, understanding generative AI, considering ethics, using agile methodologies, ensuring continuous integration, maintaining robust quality assurance, and fostering collaboration. These recommendations not only facilitate successful generative AI project management but also empower engineering students with essential skills for the evolving technological landscape.

Aggrawal, S., & Dittman, K. C. (2023, October), Preparing Engineers for the Future: Project Management for Developing Generative AI Paper presented at 2023 Fall Mid Atlantic Conference: Meeting our students where they are and getting them where they need to be, Ewing, New Jersey. 10.18260/1-2--45127

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