From Nanotech to AI: NVIDIA Intern Expands Horizons with Deep Learning Institute

by Scott Martin

Sumati Singh came to NVIDIA this summer as an intern to expand on her academic experience in nanotechnology. An introductory AI course at NVIDIA’s Deep Learning Institute got her thinking bigger than she could have imagined.

That course, Fundamentals of Deep Learning for Computer Vision, prompted her to ponder the wide applications of AI across many fields. She said that taking the course is one of those rare instances that offers a “butterfly effect” — the idea that a small change can have big results.

The Deep Learning Institute coursework was an “eye-opening experience,” she said.

Sumati Singh

The University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, senior and area native is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in nanotechnology — that’s really small stuff — and works and gets her kicks on printed circuit boards, or PCBs. Her academic emphasis is in electrical engineering.

Despite an enthusiasm for materials science and engineering, she is now open to whatever wave the tech industry might have in store for her next.

Jump on the GPU

“The thing about the Deep Learning Institute that is unique is its access to the GPU. You can actually train on one. Picking up deep learning is like skiing — you have to do it,” said DLI instructor Michael Mendelson.

Singh jumped right in. It was a big leap for a hardware-oriented person, she said, because she had never previously done anything with machine learning and wasn’t at all familiar with AI concepts or the development frameworks. But the DLI session made it easy to get started and learn using NVIDIA’s ready-to-rock DIGITS environment, she said.

The NVIDIA DIGITS setup allows people to get started right away and bypass an AWS account and finding the right machine learning libraries and more to build an AI system from scratch.

It greatly simplifies the process of getting started and actually working in AI without coding.

“Coding is not my area of expertise, so that was great for me” she said of DIGITS and the class material.

Easy-Peasy Course

The introductory DLI course got her up to speed with a lot of basic concepts before it was even lunch time. After the eight-hour, one-day course at NVIDIA’s Santa Clara campus, she was surprised to be able to hold conversations with people about AI and understand a lot of the basic concepts.

“Exposure to something new like this could completely change your career path,” she said.

After her NVIDIA internship, this up-and-coming AI rockstar plans to complete her studies back in Canada. But her sights are set on a career in Silicon Valley’s tech industry.

For now, she’s glad she got the chance to explore the world of AI. Exposure to these courses could completely change your career path, she said.

“They did a great introductory course. Taking the AI course has broadened my horizons,” Singh said.

Keep an eye out for this rising star.

For more information about our deep learning courses, check out the Deep Learning Institute.