A Call for Faculty Fellows 

The School of Data Science is pleased to have established the Data Science Faculty Fellows Program to achieve deep engagement of faculty in informing and realizing the vision, mission, and values of the school. The program is supportive of the university’s commitment to advance institutional excellence by fostering a climate of inclusive leadership.

Faculty Fellows are offered a one-year renewable appointment to take on well-defined projects that are critical to ensuring our future as a leading university for data science research and education – where we can inspire and prepare a generation of diverse data scientists who can make our world more equitable, informed, and secure. 

This inaugural call for the program offers appointments to lead the two projects described below. 


• To ensure key research and education projects undertaken at the School of Data Science are faculty-informed and faculty-led 

• To stimulate opportunities and respond to requests for data science innovations and talent from the school’s government and industry collaborators 

• To strengthen the data science community throughout the university 

• To provide career development opportunities for faculty 


• Tenured faculty at the rank of Associate or Full Professor, appointed in any department (associate must show evidence that they are making satisfactory progress toward promotion to professor) or full-time, fixed-term track faculty in the Associate or Full professor in the Practice, Instruction, Research, or Clinical series. 

Employed as faculty at UTSA for at least two years  


A Faculty Fellow is appointed for a minimum of one year with an expected workload of 20%. An appointment brings with it (1) compensation commensurate with the workload % and (2) funding to support a graduate data science student. The actual effort and compensation for each fellowship is determined by the Director, School of Data Science, and the responsible department chair/dean in discussion with the faculty member. The work is included in the faculty member’s Workload Agreement and Annual Evaluation. 

A Faculty Fellow is expected to spend a corresponding number of hours per week in residence at the School of  Data Science in San Pedro I, where the Fellow is provided with a dedicated workspace and resources. During the appointment, the Faculty Fellow also serves as an ex-officio member of the School of Data Science Faculty Council. 

Projects for AY 2022-2023 / 2023-2024 

The first two projects for AY 2022-2023/2024 involve (1) data engineering and (2) data science for next-generation census. These projects are meant to extend research and training opportunities at UTSA. They include the opportunity to work directly with some industry collaborators and with the U.S. Census Bureau, respectively. 

1. Data engineering education and research. Start date: January 1, 2023. This fellowship responds to increasing demands from industry and government for more data engineering talent. Multiple government, industry, and expert sources have reported on the shortage of data engineers and data engineering education programs. For example, a 2021 survey cited 20 master degree programs in data science for every 1 in data engineering in the United States. The programs are mismatched to the need when considering a comprehensive study of job postings conducted by the Business Higher Education Forum that showed 1 data scientist opening for every 12 data engineer openings. The School of Data Science has recent anecdotal evidence about the unmet need for data engineers or data engineering talent, as well. 

 This project requires 

• further evaluating and quantifying the need for data engineering talent, recommending an approach/strategy for talent development, and issuing a whitepaper with the findings and recommendations 

• designing/developing the education programs that UTSA can offer to fill the need of our students 

• based on an emerging collaboration with Meta – Data Engineering and Infrastructure Strategy units and the School of Data Science, developing a data engineering certificate program within the first year of the fellowship 

• pursuing at least one infrastructure and/or interdisciplinary grant to further data engineering education and research through the School of Data Science. 

2. Data science for next-generation census. Start date: January 1, 2023. In preparation for a deeper relationship between the U.S. Census and UTSA, this fellowship opportunity has been developed. The U.S. Census Bureau aims to innovate and advance the science behind the nation’s statistical infrastructure. The agency’s goals are to expand its use of data science – inclusive of new research methods and technology and of new data products and services – and to develop more of the workforce needed to apply and adapt these methods/technology and products/services. The driver for this work is responding to the national demand for data about our people, places, and economy that is more timely, accurate, and granular to help address the grand challenges that the nation faces. 

This project requires 

• serving as the UTSA lead investigator and program coordinator for the work undertaken at the university working with the Bureau 

• designing and overseeing (a) curriculum reviews of academic programs that can be pipelines for the workforce needed and (b) related project-based learning opportunities that can amplify the academic programs

• developing a research agenda that provides UTSA with opportunities to leverage the Bureau’s vast data sets 

• overseeing other defined activities in scope of the agreement with the Bureau, e.g., an annual conference, community engagement, internships and recruitment for the agency, and technical lectures. 


Nominations by deans and other senior administrators are welcome, as are self-nominations. Applications should include the following: 

No more than a 1,000-word statement presenting an interest in the project, relevant experience, and initial thoughts/ideas for approaching the project 

Up to two one-page letters of recommendation (department chair, dean, center director, etc.) 

A current CV 

A signed statement that the candidate’s department chair/dean supports the allocation of workload to the School of Data Science. The statement can include a preference about the form of compensation for the Data Science Faculty Fellow appointment. 

Applications should be sent in one PDF file to datascience@utsa.edu by November 10, 2022.