The Alvarez Pre-Ph.D. Pathway

The UTSA Carlos Alvarez College of Business Pre-Ph.D. Pathway prepares students with an enriching research experience delivered by award-winning faculty. Addressing a pressing need in the marketplace to train the next generation of faculty members, Pathway participants will receive the training necessary to become competitive candidates for top-rated business and economics doctoral programs or pursue research-intensive careers.

As a Carnegie R1 Institution, UTSA is committed to research excellence and academic innovation. With our distinguished faculty, competitive doctoral programs, prestigious academic journal publications and innovative research centers, UTSA is among the top 4% of research universities in the United States. National research collaborations and participation in programs like The Ph.D. Project help students achieve success at UTSA and beyond.

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Pathway Structure

This pathway is designed for graduate and undergraduate students dedicated to learning how to conduct and present academic research. It consists of three courses that can be completed in one calendar year for a total of nine credits.

The structured, three-course sequence aims to cultivate a student’s interest and develop their research competency in preparation for a doctoral program or a research-intensive corporate career.

Students in the pathway are part of a cohort and join a network of their peers who become a pillar of collaboration and support throughout the journey. Pathway participants have access to dedicated space to discuss research ideas and are invited to attend academic presentations and events, in addition to having opportunities to present their own research.

The next cohort begins Spring 2024.

Meet Alvarez Ph.D. Pathway Alum Victor Feagins

Victor Feagins

If there was a blueprint for how to have the ideal college experience, Victor Feagins executed the plan perfectly. While pursing his B.S. in Statistics and Data Science from the UTSA Carlos Alvarez College of Business, he boldly leveraged every opportunity to pursue his passions.

Wanting to focus on research fundamentals, he joined the college’s Pre-Ph.D. pathway his junior year. Exploring the interdisciplinary nature of research, he also was a fellow with the UTSA IES Pathways program in the College of Education and Human Development.

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Pathway Benefits

  • Become a highly-competitive candidate for top-ranked business & economics Ph.D. programs and corporate careers
  • Gain access to talented faculty mentors
  • Interact with current Ph.D. students and build your network
  • Learn how to conduct and present formal research
  • Enhance your presentation skills
  • Receive Ph.D. application guidance

Pathway Features

  • Three-course sequence, nine credits total
  • Join a cohort of research-minded peers
  • Ability to present at a research symposium
  • Dedicated meeting space for pathway cohorts
  • Apply to attend the Ph.D. Project’s annual conference
  • Access to networking events, research workshops and doctoral presentations

Participating in the Pathway

Those interested are encouraged to meet with their academic advisor at the beginning of the Fall 2023 semester to discuss incorporating the pathway courses into their degree program. Previous research experience is not required. However, students familiar with aspects of statistics, mathematical modeling and analytical coursework have found this curriculum to be most helpful in preparation for the pathway.

Recent UTSA graduates who have received their bachelor’s or master’s degrees may be eligible to participate as Special Graduates and should complete the Pre-Ph.D. Interest Form.

Careers in Research

Careers in Academia include Tenure-Track (Research, Service and Learning) and Non-Tenure Track (Service and Teaching)

Participating University

The Ph.D. Project


Research opportunities outside academia include consulting, economics, finance, government, quality assurance and control, research and development, teaching and writing.