MTSU launches new degree, certificates in data science

Local News

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — When global asset management firm AllianceBernstein decided to move its headquarters from Manhattan to Nashville, they were met with huge growth.

“I think as that growth continues we need more tech talent in the region,” said Karl Sprules, Global Head of Technology and Operations at AllianceBernstein. “We can’t be in an economy where people are just moving from role to role. We need to have a sustainable tech pipeline here.”

That call has been answered by Middle Tennessee State University.

“We are deeply committed to serving the citizens of this region and the needs of this community,” said MTSU President Dr. Sidney A. McPhee.

On Tuesday, McPhee announced the launch of the new data science academic degree program and Comprehensive Data Science Institute.

“A major event really for the city of Nashville, Davidson County and particularly the state as it relates to really addressing one of the most critical workforce needs for this region,” said McPhee.

Through the program, students can earn a bachelor’s degree of data science, while working professionals can earn a graduate certificate.

“One of the things that’s really interesting for us is to bring up the average technology and data skills of all of our employees,” said Sprules. “So it’s programs like this that are short in duration which allow people to get a good source of basic understanding and use the skills in their daily decision making is really important to us.”

For local students like Cayson Seipel, it’s an opportunity to change the world.

“I’d love to go to grad school and maybe get a PhD,” said Seipel. “I’m not just working in the computer world, but I’m also doing things that can change the way we work and live, and being able to do something that it’s not just for myself, but for everyone else.”

University officials said a PhD in Data Science at MTSU is in the works.

Applications are being accepted for the new bachelor’s degree and enrollment is open for the graduate certificate.

For more information about the MTSU Data Science Program, contact Charlie Apigian at

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