TransUnion and UIC announce endowed professorship of data science


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As Chicago continues its growth in the information and technology sectors, two local powerhouses are joining forces to help address the mounting need for data science expertise.

TransUnion, a leading global information solutions provider headquartered in Chicago, has partnered with the University of Illinois at Chicago’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences for the creation of the TransUnion Professor of Data Science. The endowment is designed to further advocate for the study of data science and the potential careers and advancements it brings.

LAS logoData science includes the collection, analysis and interpretation of information to develop smarter, more efficient consumer benefits. The field impacts virtually every industry, including healthcare, finance, real estate, automotive, agriculture, transportation, professional services, sports and more.

“We believe that the need to leverage both precise and broad data, generating usable insights, is still in its infancy,” said Jim Peck, president and CEO of TransUnion. “While the idea of data science may not be new, the results of harnessing information are limitless. This is the future. Not only of business and job growth, but of how we live our lives every day. We’re looking forward to fostering a program with UIC, and bringing more students into this course of study — ultimately leading to greater innovation and technology breakthroughs that we can only imagine today.”

The TransUnion Professor will be recruited through a national search and appointed as a senior faculty member in the department of mathematics, statistics, and computer science. The scholar will join a large group of researchers from across the campus who are engaged in data science research and applications.

“We are truly grateful to TransUnion for their generous support and partnership,” said Astrida Orle Tantillo, dean of UIC’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. “The TransUnion Professor will bring a wealth of expertise to our mathematics, statistics, and computer science program; and support our goal of graduating well-rounded data science students who have the critical thinking, problem-solving and communications skills necessary to fill important industry gaps and meet future workforce demands.”

TransUnion has developed numerous innovative solutions to not only help business customers, but also abides by their commitment to “Information for Good,” helping millions of consumers either gain access to more affordable loans or to prevent identity theft and other online fraud.

The decision to partner with UIC’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences stemmed from this commitment, as it presented the opportunity to reach an incredibly diverse population and expand new career opportunities in Chicago, which is widely considered an emerging data science talent hub.

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