Thursday, March 28, 2024

David Mongeau to step down, interim director for country's only HSI data science school announced

David Mongeau to step down, interim director for country's only HSI data science school announced

FEBRUARY 28, 2024 — David Mongeau today announced plans to step down from his role as founding director of the School of Data Science, effective March 1. He has served in the position since 2021.

The School of Data Science is one of five data science schools in the United States and the only one of its kind at a U.S. Hispanic Serving Institution. The school was established in 2018 to educate top data scientists and lead the nation in data-intensive research. It officially opened in the 167,000-square-foot San Pedro I building in downtown San Antonio in January 2023.

“David Mongeau's leadership and ability to work across disciplines have been instrumental in firmly establishing UTSA's prominence in data science and setting a trajectory for future growth,” said Heather Shipley, UTSA interim provost and executive vice president for academic affairs. “Under David’s guidance, more than 1,000 students and researchers now are learning and collaborating at San Pedro I. I am grateful for his dedication and service and wish him continued success.”

“I consider myself so fortunate to have been part of the creation of the School of Data Science at UTSA.”

A nationally recognized leader in the data science and artificial intelligence community, Mongeau brought to UTSA a distinguished record in leading research institutes and training programs, as well as in developing partnerships across government, industry, academia and the philanthropic community.

Under his leadership, the School of Data Science has recorded numerous achievements, including receiving $1.2 million in gift funding for data science, AI and machine learning student training and research programs. In addition to the undergraduate and graduate degree and certificate programs comprising the School of Data Science, school leaders now are developing a new certificate program in data engineering.

In partnership with the Association of Computing Machinery at UTSA and the National Security Agency, the School of Data Science in 2022 launched the annual Rowdy Datathon competition.

In April 2023, the school hosted the inaugural UTSA Draper Data Science Business Plan Competition, which highlights data science applications and student entrepreneurship; the second annual competition will be held at San Pedro I later this spring.

Also in 2023, the school hosted its inaugural Los Datos Conference. The school also now serves as administrative host to the university’s annual RowdyHacks competition; more than 500 students from across Texas participated in the 9th annual RowdyHacks at San Pedro I last weekend.

Mongeau has been driven to increase the reach and reputation of the School of Data Science from and back to San Antonio. In October 2023, the School of Data Science hosted the annual meeting of the Academic Data Science Alliance, bringing together more than 200 data science practitioners, researchers and educators from across the country to UTSA. The school also invested nearly $400,000 to create opportunities for UTSA students and faculty to pursue projects and participate in national data science and AI experiences at, for example, University of Chicago, University of Michigan, University of Washington, and the U.S. Census Bureau. 

Through a collaboration with San Antonio-based start-up Skew the Script, the school has reached 20,000 high school teachers and 400,000 high school students with open-source training in statistics and math, which are core to success in data science and AI.  

“I consider myself so fortunate to have been part of the creation of the School of Data Science at UTSA,” said Mongeau. “I thank the school’s dedicated staff and core faculty for their commitment to the school which is having an enduring impact on our students — the next generation of diverse data scientists — who have embraced the school’s vision to make our world more equitable, informed and secure. These Roadrunners are destined to become industry leaders and continue to advance the frontiers of data science and AI.”

Immediately prior to joining UTSA, Mongeau served as executive director of the Berkeley Institute for Data Science at the University of California, Berkeley. As executive director, he set the strategic direction for the institute, expanded industry and foundation engagement, and applied data science and AI in health care, climate change, and criminal justice.

Notably, he also initiated three data science fellowship programs and forged partnerships to enhance opportunities for legal immigrants and refugees in data science careers.

⇒ Discover more about the School of Data Science.

Mongeau also previously held leadership positions at Translational Data Analytics Institute at The Ohio State University and Battelle Memorial Institute. He began his career at Bell Labs, where he worked for more than 20 years as part of numerous communications, data, information technology and networking research groups.

University College Interim Dean Jianwei Niu will serve as interim executive director of the School of Data Science. A professor of computer science, Niu previously served as the school’s interim academic director from 2019 to 2021.

Rebecca Luther

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University of Texas at San Antonio receives ‘transformational’ $40M gift

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