ODESSA, Texas — The University of Texas of the Permian Basin has a lot to celebrate as more and more people are graduating as Falcons.

The university saw a record number of graduates in 2019, with 1,420 students getting their diplomas from UTPB. That is a 24% increase from 2018.

Graduation rates are not the only thing that has increased UTPB.

Fall enrollment for freshman and first-time students is up and there are more people living on the campus than ever before.

“It’s a great time to be a Falcon,” Tatum Hubbard, UTPB executive director of Communications and Marketing said.

Hubbard says the increase speaks to what the school’s doing at the University.

“A lot of things played into the success that we’ve seen,” Hubbard said. “Our leadership, our president, we have new deans who are coming together with innovative ideas recruiting students.”

Multiple departments saw an increase:

  • Biology 17%
  •  Engineering 8%
  • Math and computer science 7%“

UTPB says the increase will serve the community as a whole.

“What we’re doing is really important to the quality of life, to the future of this region, diversifying the economy and so we’re taking it very seriously.”

While UTPB is excited about the news, the university has its eyes on the future.

“We still have work to do,” Hubbard said. “We are not satisfied because we know this university plays a huge role in the success of this region.”

The school says it has been able to compete with other universities around the state due to the fact it is one of the most affordable colleges in the state.

It is the only four year school here in West Texas.