Headshot of Ja'Vaun Johnson
Ja'Vaun Johnson credits UT Permian Basin for his success post graduation

Just a few years ago Ja'Vaun Johnson, also known as Jay, had never heard of Odessa, Texas. Originally from the southside of Chicago, Jay knew he wanted find opportunities elsewhere.  

“Football is what originally brought me to west Texas. It was a chance to get an education and to play football for a great program, explained Ja'Vaun Johnson, UT Permian Basin alum. 

But Jay said it’s the people who kept him here.  

“I love UT Permian Basin because of the culture, the great people, and it just feels like a family or a home away from home.” 

Jay is a recent graduate from UT Permian Basin. He majored in business management and earned his degree in May 2020. After graduation, Ja'Vaun knew he wanted to stay in West Texas, a community he grew to love and now calls home. His decision to stay quickly paid off when he landed his dream job. 

“I’m now the college pastor at Crossroads ChurchIt’s an awesome opportunity where I can breathe into the lives of people that are in college - some who come from backgrounds like me. I get it.” 

Just talking to Jay you can see him beaming with Falcon pride. Whether it’s the small classroom sizes, welcoming faculty, or the community on campus, Jay said he tells anyone he can why they should choose UT Permian Basin. 

“If you want new opportunities in life, UT Permian Basin offers that. I tell anyone who wants a chance at something new and better that it’s here at UTPB.” 

And as far life after college, Jay credits this campus for preparing him for the real-world.  

“Getting an education at UT Permian Basin really prepared me for life after college. I’m more organized now, I have more discipline, and I’m a way better communicator. I have grown so much just from being a student on campus.”