Ini Adewumi served as the 2020 summer virtual commencement ceremony speaker for Rawls College.
Olasubomi Inioluwa "Ini" Adewumi, an energy commerce major, represented the Jerry S. Rawls College of Business as an undergraduate student speaker during Texas Tech University's virtual summer commencement earlier this month.
"Graduating from Texas Tech University is a symbol of a goal coming true for me and a testament to the fact that no mountain is too high or valley too low," said Adewumi. "The diploma is a ticket for you to go change the world."
Born near the Niger Delta of Nigeria, Adewumi's interest in oil and gas began with a hope to transcend the obstacles the industry faced within his home country. Desiring to learn more about the established oil and gas industry in America, Adewumi decided to attend college in the United States. In 2016, after considering several competitive energy commerce programs, he chose to attend Texas Tech.
"My experience with the program was great because the learning did not end in the classroom, neither was the learning restricted to just the energy industry," said Adewumi. "The program was a little challenging, but I would do it again in a heartbeat."
As a student in the energy commerce program, Adewumi was immersed in courses that expanded his knowledge about trading, finance, law, economics, supply chain, project management, qualitative/quantitative analysis and more. The challenging curriculum, hands-on experience and applicable projects helped him to have a well-rounded experience within the program. This experience helped Adewumi obtain a competitive land administration analyst internship with Equinor, an international energy company, during his junior year.
"Ini was successful because he always had a seriousness of purpose about his studies, an appreciation for the opportunities provided by education and a maturity that every instructor would love to see in their students, " said Area Coordinator of Energy Commerce and Assistant Professor of Practice, Nikki Kantelis. "He took full advantage of absolutely every class, every lesson learned. His curiosity was infinite, not just about energy commerce, but economics, politics and the world in general."
Outside the classroom, Adewumi worked as a tutor and mentor at the University Learning Center and TECHniques Center. Additionally, he was involved in several student organizations such as the Energy Commerce Association, National Society of Black Engineers and African Students Association. Ultimately, Adewumi's academic success and campus involvement helped him secure several prestigious scholarships including a Brant B Williams Endowed Scholarship, Joy Foundation Scholarship, SM Energy Scholarship and others.
"Tuition is always a big concern, and financial instability has its toll on students mentally and psychologically," said Adewumi. "But when things got tough, scholarship opportunities arose on merit. Those scholarship opportunities provided by the department and college are the only reason I made it to the finish line."
Adewumi contributes much of his success to the energy commerce faculty members. Because classes were limited in size, his professors were able to know him personally and provided ongoing support and encouragement. When challenges arose, Adewumi knew he could count on his professors to help him succeed.
"The energy commerce program has the best faculty I know of at Texas Tech," said Adewumi. "The method utilized by the faculty to keep the program small creates quality and quantity control, and this ensures that the faculty can know the students on a personal level."
Adewumi's future plans are rooted in his belief that a country's economic and financial growth are not only tied to its resources, but also its ability to assess market conditions to determine the potential impact of funding future projects or companies. Ultimately, he hopes to further expand his skills and expertise, so he can change the world through the establishment of regional commodities exchanges in third-world countries and the creation of a public central market data collection system for those commodity exchanges.
"As the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) countries fully transition into first world and service economies, the world's agricultural and industrial needs will have to be fulfilled by the continent with the most resources on the globe, Africa," said Adewumi. "I intend to be one of the people involved in making that a possibility."
Kantelis believes Adewumi has much to contribute to the world and that his future is bright.
"I am proud of what Ini has accomplished, and I have no doubt he will go out and change the world," said Kantelis.