AI Jumpstart

AI Jumpstart Banner-3 images. 1st image is a robot from MassRobotics, 2nd image a robot hand reaching out to a human hand, 3rd image is the computer center at the Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center (MGHPCC).

Providing Massachusetts Businesses an AI ‘Jumpstart'

On behalf of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Innovation Institute at MassTech has awarded Northeastern University a $2.2 million grant to fund AI Jumpstart Pilot Program, an effort that will allow small- and medium-sized businesses in Massachusetts the ability to deploy cutting-edge artificial intelligence, or AI, tools and techniques to help enhance their business and drive product development.

Northeastern will provide $2.0 million in matching support for the state's capital investment, bringing the total project total to $4.2 million. The project will support new technical infrastructure, including the purchase of a new state-of-the-art computing cluster that will support the collaborative projects with industry focused on the development, testing, and deployment of AI and machine learning-related technologies and strategies.

In addition, a portion of the Commonwealth's funds will be used as operating funds to boost industry engagement through a workshop for small- and medium-sized Massachusetts businesses, as well as seed grants to support faculty experts’ work with individual firms. Read more below on how your company can get involved!

Project Partners


AI Jumpstart will be managed by Northeastern University, in partnership with Tufts University and Boston University. The program will allow access to new, state-of-the-art, computing infrastructure, along with expert faculty support, providing small- to medium-sized Massachusetts businesses opportunity to engage with AI innovation opportunities that would not normally be attainable due to financial hurdles.

The program is led by Northeastern University, including five of NU's prestigious research centers:

  • Gordon CenSSIS, a graduated NSF-funded Engineering Research Center;
  • The Department of Homeland Security-funded ALERT (Awareness and Localization of Explosives-Related Threats) Center of Excellence;
  • The Institute for the Wireless Internet of Things (WIoT);
  • The Center for Signal Processing, Imaging, Reasoning and Learning (SPIRAL); and
  • The Laboratory of Computer Architecture Research (NUCAR).

Project partners include:



Download the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document prior to submitting an application for the AI Jumpstart program.

The FAQ covers many of the questions that candidate companies will have regarding the program.

Why AI?


Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning are already driving innovation across Massachusetts. The goal of AI Jumpstart is to boost the adoption and integration of AI, and to expand access to these cutting-edge technologies, helping enhance more 'Made in Massachusetts' products and services.

AI and its sub-branch Machine Learning utilize advanced algorithms to identify patterns in vast amounts of data, allowing systems to improve processes and better manage systems. Experts in the AI Jumpstart program will work with selected businesses to incorporate the new computing tools and techniques to drive advancements in:

  • Process and smart manufacturing;
  • Health and medicine;
  • Energy;
  • Security;
  • Defense;
  • Finance;
  • Education; and
  • Wireless communication.


The new program aims to provide several benefits to participating companies: 


  • Powered by new, world-class computing infrastructure housed at Northeastern;
  • Access to cutting-edge facilities, such as NU's Colosseum in Burlington, a one-of-a-kind facility; and
  • Workshop staffed by top AI and machine learning experts, designed to help your business utilize these technologies and techniques.

Key Dates


Program Launch April 8, 2021
Questions Due April 22, 2021
Initial Applications Due May 10, 2021
Decisions on Applications June 1, 2021
AI Jumpstart Workshop June 11, 2021
Program Completion Fall 2021

Submit an Application


Ready to Apply?

Click the button below to get started on your application.  A new window will open and you will be re-directed to a Survey Monkey application form.  Please read the FAQ DOCUMENT above BEFORE  submitting an application.

Click to Apply button (Submission via Survey Monkey)

If you have questions about the AI Jumpstart program, please contact James Byrnes at