San Antonio Workforce Initiative

Current StatusOperationalized


The San Antonio Workforce Initiative will promote continuing education and professional development programs for adult learners to support the city’s growing need for a skilled workforce. In addition, it will advance UTSA’s capacity to meet the educational needs of San Antonio employers through customized degree and certificate programs in various disciplines.

View the Initiative Brief

Strategic Plan Midpoint Update (Fall 2022)

The San Antonio Workforce Initiative Task Force, under the leadership of Lisa Blazer, (former) Senior Associate Vice Provost for Academic Innovation, completed a report in January 2019 outlining a framework for UTSA to support the city’s growing need for a skilled workforce.

UTSA’s implementation of the task force’s recommendations resulted in an administrative realignment and the creation of Professional and Continuing Education (PaCE). Since its inception in early 2020, under the new leadership of Melissa Vito, Vice Provost for Academic Innovation, and Melissa K. Mahan, Associate Vice Provost for Academic Innovation, PaCE has refined its mission and operational processes, hired critical personnel, established a community feedback network and continues to deepen relationships with area employers and civic partners. PaCE played a vital role in reskilling and upskilling local workers during the COVID-19 pandemic and now manages a diverse portfolio of courses and certificate programs, including community art education classes.

Having operationalized the Task Force’s recommendations, UTSA maintains a deep commitment to develop and deliver targeted continuing and professional education programs that match the university’s unique resources with the needs of lifelong learners. Through PaCE, UTSA will continue to modify and expand its offerings to meet the changing needs of residents, workers, and employers.

Professional and Continuing Education (PaCE)

This Initiative Supports Strategic Destinations

Additional membership to be determined

Melissa K. Mahan, Chair   
Associate Vice Provost for Academic Innovation


Sean Attwood
Vice President of Tech Development

Jeff Berry
Marketing Manager, Professional and Continuing Education

Arenda Burns
Vice President, Human Resources, San Antonio Area Foundation

Rachel Cannady
Librarian II, Research & Education

Esteban Cantu
Information Technology Librarian

Roger Enriquez
Associate Professor & Director, Policy Studies Center

Shawn Farrell
Assistant Vice President for Corporate and Foundation Engagement

Lisa Firmin
UTSA Military Liaison, Veteran and Military Affairs

Lisa Marie Gomez
VP, Education and Workforce Development, San Antonio Chamber of Commerce

Teja Guda
Assistant Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering

Kathryn Keeton
Sr. Executive Director of Center for Professional Excellence and Associate Professor in Practice of Management

Hector Lopez, Jr.
Associate Director Development, Honors and University College

Romanita Matta-Barrera
Executive Director, SA Works

Jianwei Niu
Interim Academic Director, School of Data Science and Associate Dean of University College

Suzana Diaz Rosencrans
Assistant Vice Provost for Academic Innovation, Director Online Marketing and Enrollment

Martha Gutierrez Saul
Director, Professional and Continuing Education

Rocky Slavin
Assistant Professor in Practice, Department of Computer Science

Tulio Sulbaran
Professor, Department Chair, Construction and Planning

Mario Vela
Executive Director, University Career Center

Melissa Vito
Vice Provost for Academic Innovation

HungDa Wan
Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Interim Director of CAMLS

Gwen Young
Lecturer II, Department of Environmental Science and Ecology