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InnovateMA and the AI for Impact Co-op

In the AI for Impact Co-op Program, students work full-time on experiential AI projects for social good. In the Spring 2024 semester, twelve AI for Impact students are working alongside the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as part of InnovateMA, using generative AI to support the MBTA, MassHealth, The Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, and MassDOT with impactful projects that will improve the delivery of services and programs for Massachusetts residents. 

In this pioneering “product-based learning” program, teams wield AI as a tool for transformative innovation, turning ideas into measurable impacts in collaboration with the communities they are serving and under the expert guidance of seasoned professionals.

How this Experiential AI Program Works

Students use artificial intelligence and human-centered design to deliver cutting-edge projects that improve lives.

  • Six month, paid, full-time job
  • Projects centered around social change
  • In collaboration with public interest partners
  • Human-centered co-design with impacted communities
  • Professional technology, product and community engagement mentors
  • Deep-dive skill-building workshops to build the AI talent pipeline

Our goal? To deliver working products in six months and create the next generation of AI-enabled leaders.

News from AI for Impact

  • Gov. Healey launches AI task force to boost competitiveness in tech

    Gov. Healey announced a partnership with Northeastern University’s Burnes Center for Social Change to develop AI tools for state government agencies.

    Feb. 14, 2024 | Hiawatha Bray | Boston Globe
  • Governor Healey Signs Executive Order Establishing Artificial Intelligence (AI) Strategic Task Force

    Governor Healey announces InnovateMA, a nation leading The Burnes Center for Social Change program that partners Northeastern University AI for Impact co-op students with Massachusetts…

    Feb. 14, 2024 | Governor Maura Healey | Governor Healey’s Office
  • AI4 Impact: Transforming Higher Education through Experiential AI Learning

    In the dynamic landscape of higher education, the AI4Impact Co-op Program at Northeastern University emerges as a pioneering initiative, reshaping the student experience and fueling…

  • Harnessing AI to Improve Government Services and Customer Experience

    In her testimony before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee on January 10, Prof Beth Noveck highlighted the work of AI4Impact coop students…

  • How AI could restore our faith in democracy

    In this piece for Fast Company, Burnes Center director Beth Noveck discusses the AI4Impact Unlocking Literacy project

Project Gallery


AI-EP uses generative AI to translate and summarize a family’s Individualized Education Program (IEP).
Partner: Innovate Public Schools/AI-EP


CivicConnect uses AI to improve how Members of Congress communicate with constituents.

Partner: PopVox Foundation/The GovLab


An AI-enabled chatbot to guide families through the process of enrolling in the federal government’s Affordable Connectivity Program that enables low-income households to save on the purchase of a computer and Internet access.

Partner: Fair Count


PolicySynth uses AI to make it easier to create well-researched online engagements. This national engagement asks families to identify why we are struggling to teach kids to read in the United States.

Partner: Museum of Science, Citizens Foundation

MBTA Info Hub

Limited and inefficient communication infrastructure for The RIDE (MBTA’s Paratransit Services) hinders service uptake and delivery for users and potential users resulting in fewer rides and rider confusion.

Partner: MBTA – The Ride

MassHealth Policy Hub

Inefficient access to policy information among MassHealth employees, resulting in inconsistent advice and opportunities to improve benefit enrollment experiences for residents.

Partner: MassHealth

EEA Grant Navigator

Residents of Massachusetts face difficulties in navigating and accessing the various state grants and loans offered through EEA, resulting in suboptimal uptake of state resources and benefits.

Partner: Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA)

MassDOT Policy Hub

New engineers face challenges in quickly accessing relevant resources and guidance, impacting their ability to quickly onboard into the department and effecting the pace of state transportation projects      

Partner: Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT)


Complex and inaccessible Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) create barriers for educators and families seeking student support.

Partner: Innovate Public Schools


Inefficiencies and complexities in the application process for Internet Connectivity Benefits hinders access to essential digital services for eligible individuals

Partner: Fair Count

Key Statistics


students working on real world generative AI projects


seasoned mentors, including the former tech advisor to the CEO of Google and the CEO/President of


client projects

AI4Impact Co-Ops

  • Etta Brooks

    InnovateMA Co-Op
  • Diane Grant

    InnovateMA Co-Op
  • Vanessa Guan

    InnovateMA Co-Op
  • Namitha J C

    Web development Co-Op
  • Rachel Kahn

    InnovateMA Co-Op
  • Dhruv Kamalesh Kumar

    InnovateMA Co-Op
  • Sai Panindra Santosh Kumar Majji

    InnovateMA Co-Op
  • Alayna Schwarzer

    InnovateMA Co-Op
  • Rudra Sett

    InnovateMA Co-Op
  • Ria Singh

    InnovateMA Co-Op
  • Briana Torres

    InnovateMA Co-Op
  • Jasmehar Vohra

    InnovateMA Co-Op
  • Kane Xu

    InnovateMA Co-Op

AI for Impact Team

  • Beth Noveck

    Director, The Burnes Center for Social Change
  • Santiago “Santi” Garces

    Technical Director
  • Steven Kadish

    Senior Fellow
  • Róbert Bjarnason

    Senior Fellow
  • Henri Hammond-Paul

  • Anirudh Dinesh

    Research Fellow
  • Cory Ondrejka

    Senior Fellow
  • Dane Gambrell

    Research Fellow
  • David Fields

    Professor of Practice and Senior Fellow
  • Sofía Bosch Gómez

    Assistant Professor and Fellow
  • Dan Jackson

    Senior Fellow and Director of NuLawLab

Are you an employer interested in developing an AI for Good project? Reach out to David Fields at [email protected] 

Are you a student interested in applying?
Reach out to Henri Hammond-Paul at [email protected]

Are you interested in supporting this unique program? Reach out to Kristin Barrali at [email protected]

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