UTSA has been ranked as the best university in the United States for a discipline which is growing and is expected to be in huge demand for years to come---cyber security.
A study by Hewlett-Packard of some 2,000 certified IT security professions ranking UTSA's 14 undergraduate and graduate programs in areas ranging from digital forensics to intrusion detection were ranked first for academic excellence and practical relevance.
"It makes sense for San Antonio because there is so much cyber security here for the military," said Dr. Mauli Agrawal, UTSA's Dean of Engineering. "That is one reason why we wanted to invest in this area and make sure we have outstanding training programs.
UTSA's cyber security programs ranked ahead of engineering schools like Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh and the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.
Agrawal says the number one ranking will be huge for UTSA's ability to attract top students and professors.
"We will definitely increase the visibility and try to demand even more," he said. "Not just in the area of cyber but in other skills that are emerging."
98 of the respondents in the Hewlett-Packard survey ranked UTSA as one of their top schools, and gave UTSA an average score of 9.40 on a ten point scale..
Agrawal credits the prowess of local cyber security centers, like the 24th Air Force at Lackland Air Force Base and growing private firms like Rackspace and the Geekdom start up incubator.
UTSA's number one ranking is particularly impressive in light of the growing importance of computer and system security to both public institutions and private companies. It is expected to be one of the major growth areas of the coming decade.