As a Marketing major at The Ohio State University, I have read dozens of textbooks and attended every available class on the subject. However, on May 7th, 2018, my knowledge was put to the test as I started my first Marketing internship at Stradigi AI. Knowing fairly little about artificial intelligence, except that Montreal is a driving hub of AI, I walked through the glass doors hungry to learn more about this growing industry and to find out for myself, why it’s become such a hot topic. It was time to stop studying someone else’s notes and to start taking my own. AI Is Not Coming For Us, It’s Coming with Us I wanted to be a part of the tech community for the same reason I assume all of us do; it’s an industry that ventures into the unknown and is constantly changing. When I first started my internship, I wasn’t sure what my days would look like, or what it meant to work for an AI company, but one thing is for sure, no day was ever the same and it was as exciting and fast-paced as I anticipated. Immediately, I could feel the strong work ethic and positive energy from everyone in the office, qualities that come from people who are not only happy, but proud of the contributions they are making to their industry. Today, there is so much hype surrounding AI that it can be confusing to separate what AI is from what it isn’t. Three months ago, if someone asked me to say the first thing that came to mind when I thought of AI, I would have immediately responded with complex lifelike robots, Westworld, and the future. Today, I think of problem solving, research scientists, and algorithms. I can no longer separate AI from humans because AI is inherently a creation of human intelligence. Media and entertainment can sometimes portray AI in a negative light, insinuating that systems not only exceed human intelligence, but will eventually take control. Although it is true that AI can perform certain tasks better than we ever could, it doesn’t mean we can’t use this to our advantage and work in a collaborative fashion. Stradigi AI shares that belief and that’s why they focus on solving the world’s most complex business problems by developing scalable and customizable solutions that companies can actually work with. However, there is still a lot of uncertainty and false hope associated with AI and it’s our responsibility to continue educating people about its potential to truly bring positive changes to the world. AI is already a huge part of our day to day lives anyway – just look at Snapchat facial recognition software, Amazon’s Alexa or instant translation. Stradigi AI’s Place In the Ecosystem One of the highlights from my internship was being presented with the opportunity to attend C2 Montreal, a creative conference that highlighted the importance of diversity in tech, offered incredible hands-on workshops and put on inspirational talks about ethics, climate change and agriculture – just to name a few. This conference is anything but traditional, because at its core, it celebrates creativity in all its forms, something crucial when working for a company that is constantly finding new ways to solve problems. I had never seen such a large conference that brought together so many professionals, all with different backgrounds, who are passionate about learning and networking. After attending C2, it’s clear that there’s a lot of hype surrounding artificial intelligence, but Stradigi AI’s goal is concrete. They leverage this technology to solve complex business problems and their approach shines through the Montreal ecosystem by being honest and cutting-edge. How the Company Is Wired A second highlight was having the chance to work with an incredible team of people. As a student, I typically spend my days studying and attending 8 am classes that teach me the tools I will need to be successful later on in my career. However, I’ve learned more from the Marketing team and their Vice President in the past 3 months than I possibly could have in a classroom. The hands on experience I gained is credited to the amount of trust and respect my team welcomed me with on my first day and as a result, I worked hard each day to keep it. I will be the first to admit that there is still so much for me to learn in regards to AI, but Stradigi AI constantly presents opportunities for everyone to learn from each other during our monthly lunch-and-learns, or during our weekly Friday breakfasts. These opportunities exist not only for the purpose of bringing everyone together, but because Stradigi AI functions as a dynamic team that values collaboration by giving people the opportunity to learn from one another. Most companies don’t want you to reinvent the wheel, but at Stradigi AI, they expect you to tear the wheel apart, see how it works, improve it and then make it turn by itself. Everyone here wears many hats and is always offering to lend a hand and share their knowledge because even though AI is a part of our day to day, there is still so much to improve and learn from. The tech industry is a fast-growing, fast-paced environment that provides an opportunity to continuously learn and tap into your creative mind. I was immediately drawn to Stradigi AI because if its passionate atmosphere and go-getter attitude, but I was most impressed with the company’s confidence in its expertise considering that AI is a complex and rapidly-changing field. My Takeaway In an office on the 10th floor of 1470 Peel Street, where 12 languages are spoken daily, I found a work family that runs on passion, hard work, and of course, Nespresso. I’m thankful to have worked alongside the creative minds of Stradigi AI and I am a better student and now, employee because of it. During my time here, I have not only developed a keen understanding of what a whitepaper and a scorecard are, but discovered what it means to work in a place that is growing as fast as AI itself. I no longer see AI as just a scalable product, but rather the ideas of the human mind come to life. I’m proud of my contribution to the team during this exciting time and to all of you still debating whether to ride the AI wave, I say this: AI is a fascinating and innovative industry that offers a spot for everyone who is hard working, creative and passionate about tech. I am grateful to have joined the Stradigi AI family during a time when the possibility of affecting positive change with AI is more real than ever. Are you looking for an opportunity to join the Stradigi AI team? Check out our careers page for all of our current job openings!