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UMSI-led team takes 2nd place in Generative AI Innovation Competition

Team members Hamza Naveed, Tanwee Deshpande, Dushyanth Aluwihare, Cindy Ye and Mohan Koushik Tupakula pose for a group photo in front of banners with the Center for Entrepreneurship logo

Tuesday, 02/20/2024

A team of students from the University of Michigan School of Information and Ross School of Business took second place in the inaugural Generative AI Innovation Competition on Feb. 2. 

Hosted by the U-M Center for Entrepreneurship in partnership with U-M Information and Technology Services, the university-wide competition challenged students to develop meaningful and commercializable products and services using generative artificial intelligence. 

Master of Science in Information students Dushyanth AluwihareTanwee DeshpandeHamza Naveed and Cindy Ye collaborated with Master of Business Administration student Mohan Koushik Tupakula on their project PsykAI, which leverages machine learning to improve the way mental health professionals are trained. 

“This award is a testament to the interdisciplinary collaboration of our team, showcasing our commitment to harnessing data, design and technology to address the problems of tomorrow,” Naveed said. “We are grateful for the recognition and eager to continue pushing the boundaries of what's possible in artificial intelligence.”

Traditional methods for training mental health professionals involve direct client interactions. The team recognized the limitations of this approach — including lack of diversity in clientele and challenges in obtaining feedback — and set out to create a solution.

“Using an AI-powered co-pilot trained on synthetic data, PsykAI provides psychology students with a safe virtual environment to practice therapy sessions with conversational agents,” Naveed said. “This unique approach allows students to develop their cultural competence, hone decision-making skills and refine therapeutic techniques without risking harm to real clients or compromising confidentiality.”

Out of 46 project submissions this fall, eight finalist teams were selected to present at the Generative AI Innovation Competition in front of a panel of esteemed tech founders and entrepreneurs. UMSI students were represented on five of those teams, presenting innovative projects related to finance, health care, education and marketing. 

The UMSI finalists include MSI student Alex Yang for SafeRecourse, a generative AI technology that provides risk-aware recommendations on financing options for households and small businesses; MHI student Ying Huang for MedLink AI, a GPT-based smart pre-diagnostic system; PhD candidate Anjali Singh for CommunityConnect, a human-AI collaborative ecosystem for designing custom project-based learning; and MSI student Manasa Jagadeesh for Mitzi Development, a digital marketing software for small businesses.

Abigail McFee, marketing and communications writer


Lead image: From left, Hamza Naveed, Tanwee Deshpande, Dushyanth AluwihareCindy Ye and Mohan Koushik Tupakula pose for a team photo at the Generative AI Innovation competition. Photo courtesy of the team.