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It Starts at State

Jason Gibson, Class of 2022

Jason Gibson smiling on WVSU campusJason Gibson’s path toward a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration is a true beginning in many senses of the word. Not only is he a first-generation college student, he’s also the first in his family to graduate high school and pursue higher education.
“I come from a relatively low-income family,” he says. “Neither my parents nor my grandparents finished high school.”
When Jason’s parents were young, they would often be pulled out of school to work. 
“My parents never got the chance to be educated,” Jason says before adding, modestly, that “to be the first to pursue a bachelor’s degree is pretty cool. I kind of defied the odds there.”
A Charleston native, Jason enrolled at STATE after preferring its location and cost to other schools in the area. What he found when arriving to campus proved a bit surprising.
“I didn’t expect to see so many people from outside West Virginia. I assumed it was largely a commuter school, but there are people here from all over. I’ve met people from Maryland to California to Brazil. It’s pretty cool to see such diversity. West Virginia gets a reputation for people wanting to leave. It’s nice to see people wanting to come. I, myself, want to stay and see improvement.”
As he moves closer with each semester toward his goal, his family’s pride is evident.
“My parents are super proud,” he says. “My dad cries when I talk about it. He’s ecstatic for me to graduate. He wants me to do better things in life than I was given.”
With a degree concentration in marketing, Jason plans to combine his education with his love of live music, working in event promotion, social media marketing and management.
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