University of Texas of the Permian Basin

University Of Texas Of The Permian Basin

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University of Texas of the Permian Basin

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The University of Texas of the Permian Basin (commonly called UT Permian Basin or simply UTPB) is located in Odessa, Texas. It was authorized by the Texas Legislature in 1969 and founded in 1973. Its unofficial fall 2007 enrollment was 3,586.


Beginning years

Among those who pushed for the establishment of UTPB was the oil industrialist Bill Noƫl, who with his wife, the former Ellen Witwer, became major philanthropists of the institution.

The University of Texas of the Permian Basin began in 1973 with only junior, senior, and graduate level programs. There were 1,011 students when the school opened. The institution permitted student input in the interviews of prospective faculty, and student recommendations were considered when additional faculty were hired.

According to legend, a rivalry with Odessa College (OC) got underway from the very beginning when OC students taunted the UTPB students that they were too old to produce a streaker. A student finally agreed, and with only his head covered, streaked across the campus. The Director of Admissions not only witnessed the feat, but contributed to the bail when the student was arrested.

Recent years

George E. "Buddy" West, a member of the first graduating class from UTPB, represented Odessa in the Texas House of Representatives from 1993 until his death in 2008. He became the legislative point man on UTPB issues. West worked to obtain the Presidential Museum and Leadership Library,...
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