GenAI at SJSU: Explore & Experiment

Fellow Spartans,

Recently, I gave a presentation to the University Leadership Council on Generative AI (GenAI). I’d like to share some of the insights from that presentation with you, our community of faculty and staff, to encourage everyone to experiment with GenAI. 

GenAI represents a massive opportunity for our campus and for our students. SJSU IT is partnering with Student Affairs and University Marketing and Communications on a smart search feature for our website to help students get answers to their questions using natural language. We’re also working with Google to pilot their Gemini AI platform at our university. I’ll talk more about those projects in a followup message, but for now, I want to give you a little AI background and share resources to learn more about GenAI to apply to your day-to-day work.

Traditional AI started in the 1950’s, eventually evolving into the predictive AI systems that are the foundation of advanced analytics. GenAI uses a similar concept, predicting desired output, to “create” new content: text, images, and even music. 

In higher education, GenAI has huge potential benefits for almost every department across SJSU. 

  • Virtual TAs can help create exam questions, assist with grading, and identify areas where students need additional support. 
  • Students can have a personalized study partner that adapts to their individual needs and learning styles, tracks academic progress, and translates course content into other languages. 
  • As a virtual office assistant, GenAI can help write PDs, evaluate incoming resumes, generate first drafts of emails, summarize long-form content, give at-a-glance breakdowns of complex spreadsheets, and more. 
  • At SJSU IT, we already use GenAI to assist with 24/7 cybersecurity monitoring. 

How can GenAI help you today? The only way to find out is to try it. 

The GenAI market is evolving rapidly – Dr. Simon Rodan from the Lucas College and Graduate School of Business recently shared with me this article comparing five top GenAI offerings, underscoring how there is no single GenAI option that works best for every use case. Don’t wait for the perfect GenAI solution: explore what’s available now. Test out different options to evaluate how their output varies. Incorporate GenAI into your daily workflow and see how it can help. Here are some resources to get you started:

Lastly, I want to acknowledge that GenAI comes with concerns about ethical use, accuracy, privacy, bias, and compliance. As with most technologies, an intentional approach can help alleviate many concerns. SJSU’s AI Vision Statement provides clear direction on how our university can embrace this new opportunity responsibly and mindfully. 

I’m excited to enter this frontier with you together. 

Best regards,
Bob Lim
Vice President for Information Technology
and CIO at San José State University

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