TA Spotlight: Mukundan Kuthalam

Each week we spotlight an OMSCS TA, so you can get to know who's behind the screen. Here are four questions for Mukundan Kuthalam, who TAs CS 6601 (Artificial Intelligence).


What do you do professionally?
I am part of the on-campus MSCS program at Georgia Tech, pursuing the master’s project track. My specialization is in machine learning, and my project focuses on developing a question generation agent that is meant to help aspiring entrepreneurs optimize their business model canvases.

Why do you TA for OMSCS?
CS 6601 was a course that helped me realize that AI was a field I really loved and helped me grow as a software developer. As such, I felt that being a TA would allow me to give back a little. It’s also amazing just how much one can learn from being a TA after seeing the students come up with creative and clever approaches that you never thought of to the course’s assignments. Finally, one of the best ways to learn something is to explain it to someone else, so this is also very rewarding as a student who wants to work in the field of AI.

What’s your advice for future students in OMSCS?
Start early, and always ask questions early. Even just looking at the assignments in the first couple of days helps you get some idea of what sort of challenges you need to tackle. This can help in terms of figuring out what you do not know early enough so that you have the time to ask questions. Also get familiar with course policies and the syllabus quickly because adhering to those definitely helps in making the most of the resources you have to help you through the course.

What hobby or activity are you looking forward to getting back to once you are done with MSCS?
Sketching. I discovered how much I enjoy it just before I joined the MSCS program, and it is very relaxing. That said, I always seem to find something or the other to be busy with so that I never really get around to sketching often enough. Hopefully that will change once I graduate this semester.