generic header image for 2023 top 10 moments
Here’s a look back on some of our greatest accomplishments of 2023

From record enrollment to campus renovations, a Lone Star Conference Championship, and our 50th anniversary, The University of Texas Permian Basin had a great year! Here’s a look back at our top 10 moments of 2023! We can’t wait to see what 2024 will bring us. 

Largest Falcon Day ever
largest falcon day everThis past spring, UTPB hosted our largest Falcon Day in UTPB history! Falcon Day is UTPB’s admissions preview event that the University hosts 4 times a year. In April, UTPB was excited to welcome more than 450 prospective students and their families to campus, which was record-breaking attendance.  

During Falcon Day, guests get a glimpse of college life, hear from current students about their college experience, and gain important information about how to become a Falcon. Our team covers everything from financial aid, residential living, student activities, and more.   

Ready to see what UTPB is all about? Our next Falcon Day is February 24, 2024. The event is free, but let us know you’re coming by registering.  #UTPBTop10 #FalconsUp 

DLS speakers
dls event with richard montanezIn 2023, the Shepperd Leadership Institute at UTPB re-vamped the Distinguished Lecture Series which brings popular speakers to West Texas! The Distinguished Lectures are open to the public and free of charge, thanks to generous Shepperd Inner Circle donors.  
In March, former NASA astronaut, a recurring character on the Big Bang Theory, and New York Times Best-Selling author, Mike Massimino spoke about teamwork, innovation, and leadership as a down-to-earth spaceman.  

In September, we welcomed Richard Montañez, the visionary behind Flamin' Hot Cheetos and former PepsiCo executive. Montañez  delivered an inspirational keynote address at the Distinguished Lecture Series held at the Wagner Noël Performing Arts Center. Speaking to an audience of over 600 attendees, Montañez delved deep into his personal journey, underscoring the theme, "One Revelation Will Lead to a Revolution."   #UTPBTop10 #FalconsUp 

Wildcatters Trail
wildcatters trailUTPB and the City of Midland were both awarded a grant from the Texas Transportation Commission to fund the beginning stages of the Wildcatters Trail. The Wildcatters Trail is a biking, running, and walking corridor which will eventually connect the cities of Midland and Odessa.    

The City of Midland’s grant award is $3,697,495 while UT Permian Basin’s grant award is $6,377,697.  UTPB President Dr. Sandra Woodley and City of Midland Mayor Lori Blong worked together on these grants to improve the quality of our spaces with safe and enjoyable multi-modal trails in the Permian Basin. A Wildcatters Trail committee made up of representatives from UTPB, City of Midland, City of Odessa, Metropolitan Planning Organization, and industry leaders guides the planning for this 19-mile trail.    #UTPBTop10 #FalconsUp  

Library & CEED renovations
library renovationThe J. Conrad Dunagan Library and CEED building underwent major renovations this year! 

2023 also brought several renovations to campus! 

The first floor of the library now features modern study spaces, a makerspace, Esports gaming arena, events studio, a new cafe with Starbucks coffee and snacks, and so much more! 

The CEED (a 30,000 square foot building) is located on our Midland Campus. The building has new office spaces, co-working space, a wet lab, a makerspace, conference/event space, and a café—all of which is available for the community to use.  #UTPBTop10 #FalconsUp  

Aaron Watson concert
aaron watsom concertAs part of the University’s 50th anniversary homecoming celebrations, UTPB brought in Texas country singer Aaron Watson for a FREE community concert! 

Over a thousand people attended the concert at the Kirk Field on campus which was followed by a bonfire and fireworks show. UTPB looks forward to continuing to grow our homecoming weekend for our students and community to enjoy for years to come! 

#UTPBTop10 #FalconsUp  


Lone Star Conference Champions
lone star conference trophyThe UTPB football team had a historic 2023 season! For the first time ever, the team won the Lone Star Conference Championship! 

Under the leadership of first-year Head Coach Kris McCullough, the Falcons defeated all DII Texas schools in the conference, a first for the football program, finishing with a perfect LSC record of 8-0.    #UTPBTop10 #FalconsUp 


Enrollment growth
enrollment growth celebrationUTPB is proud to share that we served just under 7,500 students in the 2023 academic year - a high mark for the University and up 7.5% over last year! As we celebrate this achievement, we turn our focus to the new academic year and a very strong start to 2024. 

UTPB believes that costs should never be a barrier to earning a college degree. As proof of that commitment, we are happy to share 1,091 students this fall are Falcon Free. Falcon Free covers tuition and mandatory fees for four years for families with an AGI of $100k or less a year. In all, the University distributed $18.8M including $11.7M in grants and scholarships. 

Learn more about Falcon Free by visiting: #UTPBTop10 #FalconsUp 

Behavioral Health $10M grant
behavioral impact $10M grant eventUTPB received $10 million in grants from the Permian Strategic Partnership (PSP) and the Scharbauer Foundation to strengthen the mental and behavioral health workforce in the Permian Basin. These funds will allow UTPB to cover tuition and mandatory fees for graduate students who live in one of the 22 counties in West Texas and Southeastern New Mexico that make up the Permian Basin and are majoring in Clinical Psychology, Social Work, Counseling, or School Counseling.    

Learn more and apply for the scholarship  

#UTPBTop10 #FalconsUp 

Freddy & Fiona
freddy and fionaThis year UTPB added a new member to the Falcon family: Fiona! 

Our longtime mascot, Freddy, had his childhood best friend (Fiona) fly down to help him cheer on the Falcons and to celebrate our 50th anniversary.  

So how did Fiona end up in West Texas? Read more about Freddy’s and her story here

#UTPBTop10 #FalconsUp 


50th Anniversary
50th anniversary celebration2023 marks an important year for The University of Texas Permian Basin—our 50th anniversary! With this milestone comes an opportunity to reflect on our past and share the exciting things on the horizon. For half a century, UT Permian Basin has been an invaluable pillar of education, innovation, and community in West Texas.   

UT Permian Basin has launched a special website where you can learn about upcoming events, stories that highlight the faces that make up UTPB, the history of our University, and how you can share the impact this University has had on you! We encourage everyone to visit and #TimeToFly.   

#UTPBTop10 #FalconsUp