Kai is our Director of Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence. He is an expert at the cutting edge for data science and personally works on in the field outside of his time with Breakout Mentors. Kai oversees our team of mentors working with students in Machine Learning, consults on their impressive capstone projects for college applications, and makes sure they continue to be challenged at the right pace.
When did you start to code?
I started coding my senior year of high school when I came across a python for data science book. I read the book cover to cover and fell in love with the idea of using machine learning to create tools and products to solve real-world problems. I furthered my understanding of machine learning at the University of San Francisco, where I graduated with a degree in Data Science with a concentration in computational analytics.
Why is it important for kids to start coding when young?
A great coder is not only a good problem-solver; they are an artist, capable of translating their imagination into reality by painting their ideas in code and shipping them as the software we use every day. The sooner a kid learns to code, the more empowered they will be to create a better world.
What advice do you have for kids learning how to code?
Coding is an art form. Like most art forms, the limiting factor is your imagination, openness to learning, determination to overcome challenges, and commitment to pursue your vision. Be creative, willing to explore, resilient to adversity, and determined to achieve your goals. Gift yourself these qualities, and the best and most enjoyable way to learn to code (or almost any other subject) will be to (re)create things that excite you or solve problems that interest you. Before you know it, you’ll be an artist!