Strategic Plan for The University of Texas at Arlington College of Engineering

The Way Forward

College of Engineering

Engineering the Future of North Texas


UTA Strategic Plan 2020: Bold Solutions | Global Impact

The College of Engineering is the undisputed leader in research in support of UTA’s Strategic Plan 2020: Bold Solutions | Global Impact, which provides a framework by which the University will achieve its goal of reaching Tier 1 status, as identified by the THECB NRUF program. Four themes within the strategic plan provide a roadmap for the College to successfully achieve its goals while helping to propel UTA to the highest status among research universities in the nation.


Health and the Human Condition

Improving Texans’ health care as the state’s population grows, with specialized research in key areas of need. The College of Engineering contributes with:

  • Identifying causes of and developing potential treatments for traumatic brain injuries
  • Producing the next generation of researchers in nanomedicine, particularly in the areas of cancer and cardiopulmonary care
  • Assistive technologies that help children, the elderly, and people with disabilities live normal lives


Global Environmental Impact

Managing critical issues such as climate change, energy, water, natural and man-made disasters, and pollution alongside population growth. The College of Engineering contributes with:

  • Developing methods for using recycled materials to increase the lifespan of roads
  • Leading global efforts in generating power from landfill gases and creating sustainable landfill systems
  • Developing novel methods to detect and remove harmful chemicals from the water supply


Data Driven Discovery

Supporting key sectors like health, aerospace, defense, and the accessibility of culture. The College of Engineering contributes with:

  • Testing of materials and design for hypersonic vehicles
  • Developing and testing more durable composite materials
  • Using omics data to better predict patient outcomes and determine the most effective treatment


Sustainable Urban Communities

Facilitating Texas’ growth and the expansion of our megacities. The College of Engineering contributes with:

  • Addressing the need to efficiently maintain roads, bridges and other infrastructure
  • Testing reinforced building materials for use in buildings, pipes, and other applications
  • Working with local, regional and national organizations to better predict and prevent urban flooding

College of Engineering Dean's Priorities

  •   Alumni
  •   Recruitment and Retention
  •   Research
  •   Philanthropic Fundraising
  •   Student Experience
  •   Community/Corporate Relationships
  •   Education

The College of Engineering has completed a comprehensive planning exercise guided by the UTA strategic plan and its major components. This College planning instrument has many dimensions as befits the seriousness of the task of steering the evolution of a major, comprehensive college of engineering of growing national acclaim. The most important elements of the plan, including some of the most important representative challenges, strategies, initiatives and metrics, are listed below.



Build an effective alumni organization

Current Strategies
  • Identify key alumni who will lead and key groups who will support and form the leadership committee to steer initial operations
  • Identify and execute mechanisms for the alumni organization to connect to the College, its students, and faculty
Current Initiatives
  • Increase the number of small events focused on gathering College alumni
  • Number of alumni participating in College events
Recruitment and Retention

Recruitment and Retention

Grow enrollment to 10,000 by 2020

Current Strategies
  • Execute a President-approved College recruitment plan
  • Develop a culture in which recruiting is everyone’s responsibility
  • Develop retention mechanisms based on data-driven intervention
Current Initiatives
  • Develop a signature experience for most freshman students that ties the students to the College
  • Implement a graduate recruitment plan especially focused on domestic students
  • Implement an undergraduate recruitment plan
  • Number of bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees conferred annually
  • First-year student return rate
  • Four-year and six-year graduation rates
  • Annual fall enrollment of bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral students


Increase external research expenditures in line with benchmark institutions

Current Strategies
  • Identify and build research foci of national prominence
  • Hire faculty who will help build the identified College research foci
Current Initiatives
  • Continue to develop and consolidate the number of College areas of research focus
  • Encourage external funding of more GRAs
  • Encourage writing of more large proposals
  • Annual research funding
  • Annual research expenditures
  • Per-faculty annual research expenditures
Philanthropic Fundraising

Philanthropic Fundraising

Significantly enhance the College’s philanthropic fundraising functions

Current Strategies
  • Develop relationships with more potential major donors
  • Improve stewardship of existing College donors or known potential major donors
Current Initiatives
  • Increase meetings with potential major donors
  • Increase number of events focused on stewardship of existing donors
  • Annual philanthropic funds
  • Number of prospect meetings by College leadership
Student Experience

Student Experience

Improve the student experience, especially for undergraduate students in good standing

Current Strategies
  • Support the Dean’s campus entrepreneurial plan
  • Focus on adding programming for successful students
  • Develop mechanisms to recognize faculty service contributions related to the student experience
Current Initiatives
  • Identify a new space for a College Student Success unit with additional focus on recruitment/retention of undergraduates
  • Develop the College maker/prototype space
  • Focus on holding and improving the College Innovation Day
  • Grow College support of student organizations
  • Number of students completing an Honors degree annually
  • Number of students participating in College Innovation Day
  • Number of students participating in an internship
  • Percent of undergraduates participating in an authorized club
Community/Corporate Relationships

Community/ Corporate Relationships

Build College institutional relationships with community stakeholders

Current Strategies
  • Develop better-adapted BOA for College needs
  • Develop a much wider range of marketing materials describing the College’s many contributions
  • Improve communication and marketing
  • Encourage enhanced advocacy on behalf of the College by employers of the College’s students
Current Initiatives
  • Hire corporate development officer
  • Refine and deploy Community & Corporate Relations Report
  • Follow up on specific relations with key industry partners
  • Develop stewardship of the College recruiting organizations
  • Number of companies attending the College Career Fair
  • Number of company-sponsored chairs/professorships
  • Number of U.S. master’s students
  • Number of company-sponsored activities in the College


Develop distinctive educational programs, especially for undergraduate students

Current Strategies
  • Develop a cadre of faculty willing to author and participate in
  • interdisciplinary educational proposals and initiatives
  • Develop proposals to Federal agencies responding to new
  • initiatives in engineering education
  • Develop a culture of cross-listing courses for enhanced
  • educational efficiency
Current Initiatives
  • Develop niche markets for online master’s programs
  • Implement the Grand Challenges Scholars program
  • Develop clear demarcation of full-time and part-time graduate
  • students
  • Number of online master’s programs with off-campus
  • enrollment greater than 30
  • Number of education proposals submitted annually to Federal
  • agencies
  • Number of cross-listed courses among College units
Student Ambassadors

The Five Distinguishing Activities

In addition to the College’s efforts, the University will provide all undergraduate students with a competitive edge by connecting them with the University’s experiential learning ecosystem –The Five Distinguishing Activities. These activities will enable students across the University to identify and participate in these experiential learning opportunities that enhance their career preparedness, dedication to lifelong learning, and appreciation of a diverse and inclusive community. The Five Distinguishing Activities are:



College of Engineering Research Focus Areas and Sub-Areas


Guiding Aspirations

UTA’s Strategic Plan 2020: Bold Solutions | Global Impact features six Guiding Aspirations. By fulfilling these aspirations, the University will become the intellectual heart of the community and a leader in the discovery, integration, and application of knowledge. It will set new standards for a transformative educational experience not bound by time, space, or location, and the College of Engineering will contribute to and benefit from these standards. The University’s Guiding Aspirations are below.

Transform the student experience by enhancing access and ensuring success


Recent College of Engineering activities in support of this aspiration:

  • NSF Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need grants
  • Online courses, including eight master’s degrees that may be completed online
  • ENGR 1300, which helps students overcome math and problem-solving issues
  • NIH T-32 grant to recruit and train bioengineering doctoral students in nanotechnology
Engage in high-impact research and scholarship


Recent College of Engineering activities in support of this aspiration:

  • Organized Research Center of Excellence on Sustainable and Resilient Civil Infrastructure, developing better design and construction of sustainable and resilient civil infrastructure.
  • Three University Transportation Centers, including one where UTA is the lead institution.
  • Membership in NASA’s Systems Engineering Consortium
  • Affiliate membership in Argonne National Laboratory’s Joint Center for Energy Storage Research
  • Photonics research for security, energy, healthcare, and other applications.
Build on faculty excellence to strengthen academic programs


Recent College of Engineering activities in support of this aspiration:

  • Forty-four Fellows of 33 professional organizations
  • One member of the National Academy of Engineering and nine Fellows of the National Academy of Inventors
  • The inaugural Embracing Challenge Award winner.
  • Four NSF CAREER Awards in 2015-16, the most ever in one year at UTA.
Strengthen collaboration with corporate and nonprofit sectors


Recent College of Engineering activities in support of this aspiration:

  • Summer programs for middle- and high-school students
  • Water school for municipal water departments
  • Continuing education and training for building professionals
  • Engineering Saturdays for children from preschool to high school
  • Industry-supported National Science Foundation Centers in the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Computer Science and Engineering, and Civil Engineering Departments
Enhance visibility and impact through global engagement


Recent College of Engineering activities in support of this aspiration:

  • Solid Waste Institute for Sustainability, providing expertise around the globe to make waste management and landfills more efficient and sustainable
  • Agreements to accept students from and collaborate with universities from several countries
  • Establishing new standards for synthetic-fiber-reinforced concrete culverts, storm drains and pipes.
Lead in creativity, innovation, and entrepreneurship


Recent College of Engineering activities in support of this aspiration:

  • Engineering entrepreneurship course
  • Membership in an entrepreneurship program hosted by Stanford University and VentureWell that helps students bring ideas to market.
  • Involvement with EpicMavs, UTA’s on-campus innovation resource