Generation AI: Introducing artificial intelligence to all UTSA students

Working with MITRE, UTSA is introducing artificial intelligence principles and practices to students across all academic disciplines. The goal of Generation AI Nexus, or Gen AI, is to help all students, regardless of their major, understand AI and how to use it as an effective tool. Our participating faculty use an instructional design methodology designed my MITRE to develop more than 10 lesson modules and access a central repository where they can also browse and download lessons and data sets from other classes across the country.

More than 1,200 students have participated in Gen AI lessons to date, with another 1,000 expected to take part in the Spring 2021 semester. Faculty from the following disciplines have incorporated AI, big data analytics and data visualization lessons into their courses since Spring 2020:

Paid Internships: UTSA students working for MITRE

As a result of the partnership, MITRE developed a summer internship program and began recruiting UTSA students for what has become a prestigious, highly sought-after and rewarding opportunity. In Summer 2019, MITRE hired two UTSA interns, one of which was David Akusu, who ended up continuing as a year-long intern. The other summer intern, Michael King, was offered a full-time position with MITRE after he graduated from UTSA in December.

Cheyenne Sanchez, Computer Science, Class of 2020, MITRE Intern
“The community at MITRE is absolutely inspiring and introduced me to boundless opportunities as a student. ”
Cheyenne Sanchez, Computer Science, Class of 2020, MITRE Intern

Hands-On Experience: Developing platform frameworks

UTSA students from the Honors College, College of Engineering and College of Sciences will be gaining hands-on experience assisting the Defense Health Agency (DHA) with the integration of their Service Now customer, IT and employee workflow platform. Our students will be writing portal script to customize the platform specific to the DHA’s needs.

Additionally, our students will work closely with School of Data Science faculty to develop a platform framework – essentially a web-based knowledge management system – that holds information and makes it accessible and searchable. Similar to any large customer relationship management system, the platform will be used by the NSCC to store and recall cyber-related data.

Continuing Education: Developing data science online boot camp

Associate Dean of University College and Interim Academic Director of the School of Data Science (SDS) Jianwei Niu and SDS faculty from Carlos Alvarez College of Business, Margie and Bill Klesse College of Engineering and Integrated Design, and College of Sciences are creating two short courses in data science and data engineering. In Fall 2020, the courses were offered as an online boot camp to MITRE employees and the UTSA team evaluated the effectiveness of the curriculum. Ultimately, the goal is to make the courses publicly accessible as part of UTSA’s continuing education portfolio.

Other Notable Collaborations

  • UTSA and MITRE leveraged the national cyber security INSuRE program to establish a user acceptance testing framework for agile software development.
  • The Cyber Threat Defender K-12 program developed by UTSA’s Center for Infrastructure Assurance and Security (CIAS) was adopted by and being used by MITRE as a national STEM initiative. Read more about this program on UTSA Today.

For more information about UTSA’s partnership with MITRE, contact Patricia Geppert and Jianwei Niu.