Building the Next Generation of AI Talent in Nepal

Sameer Maskey

I have always lived by the school of thought that education is the most powerful tool in the world. Quality training can not only empower people of all backgrounds to drive innovation and partake in new opportunities, but can also bridge socio economic divides. However, access to education, especially in high-demand and high-paying skill sets such as artificial intelligence and machine learning, remains a distant dream for most. This is particularly true for those in underserved markets like Nepal.

Over the last few years, we at Fusemachines, have been making concerted efforts to bridge this critical training gap through myriad teaching offerings and workshops in Nepal. Of these, the one that continues to create the most notable impact is our AI Fellowship Program, which was created with the goal of identifying and sponsoring deserving candidates to undergo the best-in-class AI training without having to leave their country. Today, Fusemachines proudly employs a number of AI Fellows and some of them have gone on to work for large global enterprises.

I am, therefore, proud to share that we have now launched the newest iteration of this program — Fusemachines AI Fellowship 2022 in Nepal. With each new iteration of our fellowship program, we are more thoughtful about the courses to include and the selection process to employ. Furthermore, we have been extremely fortunate that in our goal is to continually expand and grow this critical offering, we have received support from our committed partner UKaid Skills for Employment Programme (SEEP).

Over the last two years, UKaid SEEP has continually supported our AI training initiatives in  Nepal, with the shared goal of creating credible AI talent needed to advance Nepal’s ICT sector. Most notably, UKaid SEEP has been monumental in our efforts to expand the fellowship program and have helped us build stronger collaborations with academic institutions and other system actors in the country. We are truly grateful for their support

This year too, Fusemachines’ AI Fellowship Program will have a keen focus on upskilling university students, graduates and postgraduates with computer science and mathematics backgrounds. We will sponsor 100 participants in total, who will undergo a year-long accelerated learning environment, featuring best-in-class courses curated by leading US university educators and researchers and delivered by notable external and in-house AI experts. By the end of the program, students will have a solid understanding of Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Deep Learning algorithms as well as underlying mathematics and code. For more information on the program, I encourage you to visit https://fuse.ai/ai-fellowship/.

 There is a greater need for qualified engineers – now more than ever. With organizations globally embracing sophisticated forms of technology like AI, identifying and training talented and driven candidates is a critical step on our path to Democratizing AI by enhancing access to high quality AI training for people all over the world. I hope we continue to find new ways and partnerships to bring the much-needed talent into the global AI market.