Researching Responsible AI Technologies & Human Experiences
Hey there, I'm Jay 👋🏾
I'm a Fifth Year Ph.D Candidate in Human-Centered Design and Engineering (HCDE) At The University of Washington (UW) - Seattle.
My research centers the intersections of society + AI/ML technology + Equity + Innovation.
Jay L. Cunningham
With a background in software engineering, product management, and UX research/design, I am passionate about responsibility/fairness in artificial intelligence/machine learning (AI/ML) systems and user experiences (UX) through inclusive design, algorithmic/design justice, and tech public interest/policy.
My current research interests investigates the integration of human-centered design (HCD) methods with community-collaboration and equity-centered approaches to explore and address the sociotechnical implications of race, culture, identity & power and the intersection of intelligent systems and machines (AI/ML; NLP; Generative AI (ChatGPT); Large language models (LLM); FinTech). My doctoral work aims to advance responsible design practices that can lead to more inclusive, equitable, and sustainable language technology experiences for users of historically marginalized communities.
The collective broader impacts of my research advances technical design as tools/practices of liberation and justice for underrepresented users and marginalized communities.
“Thank you for all that you do to advance our thinking and execution, ensuring that the technologies that we build are responsible and equitable." - Group Mgr @ Google Research
Originally from Artesia, Mississippi, I pursued my undergraduate education at The University of Alabama, acquiring a B.S. in Computer Science and a minor in Civic Engagement and Leadership. Later, I secured an M.S. in Human Centered Design & Engineering (HCI) from the University of Washington, continuing into doctoral studies. My doctoral research and education have been generously supported by the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship (NSF-GRFP), the Gates Millennium Scholars Program (GMSP-UNCF), and the National GEM Consortium Ph.D. Engineering and Science Fellowship (GEM). I've consistently aimed for scholastic, professional, and civic excellence both on-campus and off-campus, while taking pride in grounded values of servant leadership, equity, and strategic action. I proudly advocate for causes like minority student access to higher education and funding, broadening diversity in tech/computing/design, and affordable housing for vulnerable communities.
Here's some organizations and causes that I support:
Safe Place Foundation - Starkville, MS
Beyond work, education, and research, I'm a true social butterfly and community-builder. In Seattle, WA I founded "Seattle Black Valley" a collective of over 1,000 young-Black professionals organized for civic, social, and community engagement. Personally, I'm a dog-Dad to Akai (2.5 yr. Shiba Inu), a son, brother, and follower of Christ. I enjoy fitness (cardio, Pilates, weight-training, biking, swimming, hiking), fashion influencing (vintage, high-fashion, men's fashion, plus-size), arts (music, instruments, glass-art, abstract art, oil painting), travel (international, solo, exotic), cooking/food (southern soul food, BBQ, seafood, charcuterie) real estate investing (short-term rentals, multi-family, commercial), and most recently flight/aviation (training for private-pilot's license).