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The University of Texas of the Permian Basin
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A four-year UT institution located in Odessa, TX.
A four-year UT institution located in Odessa, TX.

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A big UTPB welcome to our new head football coach, Justin Carrigan!
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UTPB Announces New Vice President of Business Affairs

Mark A. McGurk has accepted the position of vice president for Business Affairs at The University of Texas of the Permian Basin effective February 1st.
 
McGurk will be a principal member of the University’s executive team, reporting to President Watts. He will provide leadership for the administration, coordination and developmentof the finance team which includes accounting, purchasing and human resources.
 
“I am very pleased that such a highly qualified candidate for vice president of Business Affairs has agreed to join UTPB effective February 2015,” said David Watts, president ofUTPB. “Mark McGurk knows financial management and he knows Texas. UTPB is fortunate to have him join us.
 
”McGurk was selected following a nationwide search that began in October of 2014. The search committee considered numerous candidates and interviewed two finalists. Faculty and staff were invited to meet each candidate and provide input.
 
He succeeds Dale Cassidy, who served in the position from March, 2012 to October, 2014.
 
McGurk currently serves as associate vice president and comptroller at The University of Arizona. Before that, he was the associate comptroller at The University of Texas at ElPaso.
 
McGurk received a Masters of Educational Leadership from Northern Arizona University and a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting and Finance from The University of Texas at El Paso.“
 
Mr McGurk’s financial expertise and his familiarity with Texas and the University of Texas System make him an outstanding choice for this important position,” said Dan Heimmermann, provost and vice president of UTPB.
 
“Thanks to the search committee chaired by Dr. Dan Heimmermann for their excellent work,” added Watts.
 
“I am grateful to the committee and President Watts for entrusting me with this position,”said Mark McGurk. “I look forward to the opportunity to serve UTPB and the community. Go Falcons!”

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UTPB Athletic Training Education Program Achieves CAATE Accreditation

The University of Texas of the Permian Basin Athletic Training Education program received word that they had achieved accreditation by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE). The process is rigorous, involving faculty, lengthy reports and an on campus site evaluation.
 
The UTPB Bachelor of Science Athletic Training major is now one of 20 accredited programs in the state of Texas. This program develops knowledge, skills and professional atttudes and behaviors necessary for the practice of Athletic Training. In order to be accredited, a program must first teach and evaluate each course and graduate its first class.
 
“The preparation and hard work has paid off,” said David Watts, president of UTPB. “CAATE accreditation is another indicator of the quality of our programs and the UTPB Athletic Training Education program meets their high standard.
 
”The purpose of CAATE is to develop, maintain and promote appropriate minimum education standards for quality for professional, post-professional and residency Athletic Training programs. Founded in 1991, CAATE is responsible for the accreditation of more than 360 professional(entry-level) Athletic Training programs and 18 post-professional programs.
 
The importance of accreditation is best described by the Council of Higher Education Accreditation in their publication, The Value of Accreditation, “An institution or program that has successfully completed an accreditation review has in place the needed instructional, student support and other services to assist students to achieve their educational goals.
 
Accreditation is both a process and a status. It is the process of reviewing colleges, universities, institutions and programs to judge their educational quality - how well they serve students and society. The result of the process, if successful, is the award of ‘accredited status’.”
 
“This accreditation means that we are now able to offer Athletic Training students graduating from this program the ability to take the BOC (Board of Certification for the Athletic Trainer)Exam and become an ATC (Certified Athletic Trainer), said Richard Lloyd, assistant professor inKinesiology.
 
“This is a promising career for students who love sports and want to work in healthcare,” added Watts. “ Those with degrees in Athletic Training Education not only work for K-12 sports programs and professional sports teams, but are hired in places beyond the playing field including the military, performing arts and industry.”
 
For more information call Richard Lloyd at 552-2388 or Admissions at 552-2605.
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Fall Enrollment Up 8.6% Over Last Fall

Fall Enrollment for UT Permian Basin is a record-high 5,565 students. This number represents an 8.6% increase in headcount and a 4.4% increase in Student Course Hours (SCH’s) over the 2013 fall enrollment. Resident freshmen are up 36%, and transfers areup 7%. Housing is full.

Among the programs with a significant increase in enrollment are petroleum engineering up 95% and mechanical engineering which is up 32%. The BAAS (Bachelor of Applied Arts and Science) is up 80%. This program offers career advancement opportunities to students who have already earned an Associate of Applied Science.

In the College of Education, the Fast Track to Teaching program is up 72%. This fast, affordable program offers students a convenient transition to teaching. The cost for FastTrack is competitive and the program is fully online to fit busy schedules. Designed to prepare students for positions of leadership in education, the Masters in Education Leadership online is up 118% and the special education online program is up 38%.

The newly opened Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) enrollment is up 236% and the pre-nursing program is up 45%.

Primary factors contributing to enrollment growth are the expansion of university online programs, a focus on quality teaching and the affordable cost of tuition.

“Our goal has always been to offer a high quality education to our students at a cost they could afford,” said David Watts, president of UTPB. “I want to recognize the hard work of our faculty and staff for their ongoing efforts and innovative approaches to improve student access and success while enhancing excellence in the classroom.”

U.S.News and World Report has listed UTPB as a Top Tier university for a number of years. U.S. News and World Report also ranked UTPB as the top Texas public university in online instruction.

The first school in Texas to offer a $10,000 bachelor’s degree in select majors, UTPB has now been recognized as the second least expensive Texas public, four-year institution for all college expenses, including tuition and fees, according to a College for All Texans’ report.

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Mike and Sheila Abusaab with Sonic Drive-ins invest in UTPB. "We believe in education." said Mike Abusaab in a check presentation to David Watts, president of UTPB. The donation is a continuing commitment by the Abusaabs to education and scholarships at UTPB.
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On Friday, August 22, 2014, Dr. William and Mrs. Ordelle Watts presented The University of Texas of the Permian Basin with a check that established the William and Ordell Watts Professorship in Engineering.  

The Watts’ are long-time donors and benefactors of the University. Dr. Watts held the position of vice president of Business Affairs from 1977-1986, served as dean of the School of Business and retired from the UTPB faculty in 1999. He is now a professor emeritus at UTPB. 

The William and Ordell Watts Professorship in Engineering is an investment in the future of the Engineering Progam, UTPB and the West Texas Community.
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