Kempner Kicks Off Summer Undergraduate Research Program

By Deborah Apsel LangJune 20, 2024

Eleven Harvard undergraduates welcomed as inaugural KRANIUM participants

This year's cohort of KRANIUM students is comprised of 11 Harvard undergraduates, each undertaking an individual research project investigating the foundations of intelligence in natural and artificial systems.

Cambridge, MA—On June 10 the Kempner Institute welcomed its first cohort of undergraduate summer students for the start of KRANIUM, a 9-week intensive summer research program in intelligence for Harvard undergraduates.

KRANIUM participants joined their Kempner mentors and supervisors at the program’s kickoff event on June 10 at the Kempner Institute in Allston, MA.

This summer’s participants include 11 Harvard students at various stages of their undergraduate studies–from first year students to seniors. Each student is supervised by a Kempner-affiliated faculty member and undertakes an individual research project investigating the foundations of intelligence in natural and artificial systems. This summer’s student projects cover a diverse range of intelligence topics,  from using machine learning to predict antibiotic resistance, to employing large language models to better understand how linguistic attributes correlate with neural signals in electrocorticogram recordings of the brain.

Sponsored by the Kempner Institute as part of the Harvard Summer Undergraduate Research Village (HSURV), KRANIUM (Kempner Research in Artificial & Natural Intelligence for Undergraduates with Mentorship) provides funding, room & board, mentorship, and a host of educational and community programming for participating students. 

In addition to the KRANIUM summer program, the Kempner also offers undergraduate research opportunities during the fall and spring semesters through the KURE program. To learn more, visit the undergraduate research programs page on our website.

The full list of Summer 2024 KRANIUM participants, mentors and projects are listed below:

KRANIUM StudentFaculty SupervisorPrimary Mentor(s)Project
Ege ÇakarCengiz PehlevanCengiz PehlevanLogic Gate Learning: From Building Blocks to Complex Logical Tasks in Neural Networks
Emma FinnDemba BaManos Theodosis and Andy KellerLearning Artistic Signatures: Symmetry Discovery for Style Transfer
Ely HahamiHaim SompolinskyKazuki IrieLarge Language Models with Long-Term Memory
Kayla HuangSham KakadeDavid BrandfonbrenerEnhancing natural language capabilities of AI through hybrid MoE and GSSM models
Lavik JainMarinka ZitnikYasha EktefaePredicting Antibiotic Resistance in Mycobacterium tuberculosis with Interpretable Machine Learning
Justin JiMartin WattenbergKenneth LiAttackVis: A visualization playground for large language models in response to adversarial attacks
Sean MengBernardo SabatiniKevin MastroInforming ML “Explore/Exploit” Balance through Insights from Age-Dependent PFC Circuit Modulation
Aneesh MuppidiSamuel GershmanWilka CarvalhoLet’s Learn Agency: Emergent Agent-Oriented Representations
Anne MyklandDavid Alvarez-MelisNaomi SaphraPolysemy and Large Language Models
Alliyah SteeleGabriel KreimanMorgan Talbot and Prinav MisraUtilizing Large Language Models to Correlate Linguistic Attributes with Local Field Potential Responses in Ecog Recordings.
Johnathan SunSham KakadeSamy JelassiSearch Algorithms and Value Functions in Programming Puzzles
Each of the 11 KRANIUM students is supervised by a Kempner-affiliated faculty member and primary mentor, and undertakes an individual research project investigating the foundations of intelligence in natural and artificial systems.

About the Kempner

The Kempner Institute seeks to understand the basis of intelligence in natural and artificial systems by recruiting and training future generations of researchers to study intelligence from biological, cognitive, engineering, and computational perspectives. Its bold premise is that the fields of natural and artificial intelligence are intimately interconnected; the next generation of artificial intelligence (AI) will require the same principles that our brains use for fast, flexible natural reasoning, and understanding how our brains compute and reason can be elucidated by theories developed for AI. Join the Kempner mailing list to learn more, and to receive updates and news.