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October 25, 2019 | Andrew Hurst

SAGU football player and youth minister, Jason Watson Major : Youth and Student Ministries

Hometown : Tazewell, Virginia

Q: What led you to SAGU?

Growing up as a Pastor’s Kid, I’ve always known about the major AG Schools. SAGU was always on my radar as a high school senior. I was playing football for my school (Tazewell High School, Tazewell, Virginia) and one of my dreams was to play college football. My other dream was to be involved with youth ministry.

I come from a small town in southwest Virginia. People say Texas football is big, but it’s nothing compared to small town, Southwest Virginia football. The community wraps around these kids and it’s a special thing to be apart of. I have loved football every second of my life. When choosing a university, I wanted to see if I had a chance to play college football. Former SAGU Football Head Coach, Frank Tristan, gave me my shot and I was blessed to play for the Lions for 2 seasons. Football has been my passion ever since I was a young kid and since I was 15 that passion was shared with ministry. While looking, I was also getting recruited to play football at Evangel and SEU as well as SAGU. However, SAGU stole my heart. SAGU offered me both so that was kind of an easy decision when deciding where to go to school.

Q: Why did you decide on Youth and Student Ministries?

When I was 15, God called me into full time ministry at the Appalachian district youth camp. I wasn’t sure what particular type of ministry until a year later, on the same night of the week, at the same spot on the tabernacle floor, in the same building, He called me to youth ministry. I felt this peace and assurance during the following days and months. God opened so many doors to SAGU and sent confirmation through different aspects of my life. I knew this is where I was supposed to be.

Q: Can you tell me a little about your current ministry and how this opportunity came about?

I am the Youth Pastor at Princeton First Assembly of God. Our group’s name is IGNITE Student Ministries. Our motto is “Sparking a flame in our hearts, so we can IGNITE a fire in our community.” I have been here full time since August 11, 2019. I am also a volunteer assistant coach at Tazewell High School for my old team. I help coach O-Line and I am the Defensive End position coach.

This opportunity came about when I was doing this internship at the church for my degree plan. Beginning of summer, I planned to come back to SAGU that fall, play football and continue going to school. Little did I know, God had different plans. Pastor Dan Moore and I discussed the possibility of me staying full time after the summer ended. We prayed about it for a month and fasted on it, and eventually, I was offered the job and I accepted. I felt like God was opening this door and I need to step through.

Q: What do you enjoy most about your current role?

What I enjoy most is being able to interact with the students. Being able to hear their stories and to be their outlet. These students go through so much nowadays in school, their home life, and just being a teenager. It’s nice being able to be that person that helps them escape and grow closer to God.

Q: How do you think SAGU has helped prepare you for full-time ministry? What impact has SAGU had on your faith?

Sagu has helped me prepare for ministry through the incredible relationships I had with my teachers. These professors aren’t like ones at a state school. They care for you on another level. Being able to ask for prayer or advice from your teacher is one of the best feelings. They helped me connect with people that I’ll keep for the rest of my life. The sense of family at SAGU is so evident you can’t miss it. The classes taught me on another level how to connect with God personally and then helping to connect with my students as well.

Q: How has the transition been from on-campus to distance education (DE)? What are some things about DE that you enjoy?

The transition to DE was a little tough at first, but my professors and other staff members at SAGU helped me get everything under control. Now I am able to work as a youth pastor, a coach and still go to school. It’s the best of all worlds.

Q: What plans do you have following graduation?

After I graduate, the goal has always been to join the United States Navy. Both my grandfathers, one of my uncles, and my father served in the military. I want to keep the tradition going and serve my country. Just like Coach Smith says, “your ministry is anywhere you are.” I will be able to share God’s love while I am helping serve my country. I still plan to be involved in ministry and coaching if the opportunity arises. Most importantly, I want to make sure I am doing what God has called me to do and the purpose he has for me.

Want to learn more about SAGU’s bachelor’s degree in Church Leadership? Click here .

Southwestern Assemblies of God University is a private, Christian university located 30 minutes south of the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex in Waxahachie, Texas. The university was established in 1927, and now offers more than 70 associate, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees on campus or online. More information is available at

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