Announcing Howard University's Groundbreaking AI Initiative


Dear Howard University Community,

I am pleased to join with Provost Anthony Wutoh to announce the creation of a groundbreaking, University-wide Artificial Intelligence (AI) initiative here at Howard University. As a leading institution committed to both academic excellence and social justice, Howard University is uniquely positioned to provide thought leadership and interdisciplinary engagement in the development and implementation of AI across the academy.

The AI initiative will address four overarching goals: ethics, equity and societal impact; research and innovation; education and skill development; and operational efficiency. These pillars will guide our efforts as we harness the transformative potential of AI for the betterment of society.

As a key component of this initiative, we have established our inaugural President’s Artificial Intelligence Advisory Council (AIAC). This group, which is listed below, will provide  direction and implementation regarding AI throughout the institution in academic programs, University offices and units, and strategic planning activities.

Ethics, Equity and Societal Impact

As AI becomes increasingly pervasive in society, it is crucial to identify and address ethical considerations, promote equity in access, while evaluating the broader societal impacts of the technology. Our initiative will foster discussions, workshops, and research activities focused on ethical AI principles, fairness, transparency, accountability, and bias mitigation.

Through this initiative, Howard University will amplify its voice in promoting participation, diversity, and inclusivity within the AI industry and community. We will advocate for responsible AI deployment and democratization, engaging with policymakers and community stakeholders to ensure that AI technologies benefit our entire society.

Research and Innovation

Another key goal of the initiative is to advance the frontiers of AI through cutting-edge research and innovation. We will support faculty and student-led research projects across various AI domains, including machine learning, natural language processing, computer vision, robotics, cybersecurity, and ethical AI. This will involve collaboration with industry partners, government agencies, and other academic institutions, facilitating the transfer of knowledge and technology, leading to impactful discoveries and solutions to global challenges.

Education and Skill Development

The third goal of the AI initiative is to equip the Howard University community, especially our students, with the knowledge, skills, and hands-on experience necessary to thrive in the field of AI. We will offer academic programs, courses, workshops, and training opportunities tailored to various levels from introductory to advanced expertise. Furthermore, we will foster interdisciplinary collaboration and integrate AI concepts into diverse fields, including computer science, engineering, mathematics, healthcare, social sciences, and the arts and humanities.

Operational Efficiency

The final goal of the AI initiative is to determine the optimal use of AI-driven tools, techniques, and models to improve efficiency in a variety of business processes across the University. We will evaluate areas of natural fit to increase capacity in operational areas not limited to but including enrollment management, financial aid, the registrar, human resources, and accounts payable. Creating process efficiency through the integration of AI tools will provide more in-depth analysis of the trends in many areas and provide the ability for staff to focus on more strategic endeavors.

Through prioritizing education, research, and societal impact, the AI initiative at Howard University will contribute significantly to preparing the next generation of AI professionals, advancing the state of the art in AI, and fostering a more inclusive and ethically grounded AI ecosystem.

The first cohort of AIAC members is listed below:

  • Anthony Wutoh, Provost & AIAC Chair, Office of the Provost
  • Christopher Boxe, Associate Professor, College of Arts & Sciences
  • Allison Bryant, Vice President, Corporate Relations, Office of Corporate Relations
  • Legand Burge, Professor, College of Engineering & Architecture
  • Rawat Danda, Professor & Associate Dean, College of Engineering & Architecture
  • Karmecia Ellis-Dickens, Director of Enterprise DevOps, Enterprise Technology Services
  • Yesenia Espinal, Associate Vice President, Data Analytics, Office of the Chief Operating Officer
  • Oluwajuwon Fawole, Graduate Student, College of Engineering & Architecture
  • Marchon Jackson, Associate Vice President, Research, Office of Research
  • Kimberly Jones, Associate Provost, Office of the Provost
  • Hugh Mighty, Senior Vice President for Health Affairs, Health Affairs
  • Thomas Obesisan, Associate Vice President, Regulatory Research, Office of the Provost
  • Olga Osaghae, Associate Vice President & Chief Information Officer, Enterprise Technology Services
  • Benjamin Talton, Executive Director, Moorland-Spingarn Research Center
  • Amy Yeboah, Associate Professor, College of Arts & Sciences
  • Paul Zeleza, Senior Advisor, Office of the President
  • Kweli Zukeri, Director of User Experiences & Web Strategy, Office of University Communications

This AI initiative represents a bold step forward for Howard University. By embracing the transformative power of AI, we will lead in shaping a future where technology and humanity advance together. Please remain on the lookout for further updates on this initiative in the weeks and months ahead. We eagerly look forward to your participation in this project.

Committed to Truth and Service,


Ben Vinson III, Ph.D.

Anthony K. Wutoh, Ph.D., R.Ph. 
Provost & Chief Academic Officer


Education, Social Justice and Statements