Rolando Bernal, a marketing and finance major graduating in May 2021, shares about his experiences at Texas Tech and Rawls College.
Wherever life takes them after Rawls College — graduate studies or a new job — the spring class of 2021 reflects on the achievements made possible through a community that promotes academic success, encourages student involvement, and inspires excellence.
During his undergraduate career, Bernal strengthened his leadership skills through involvement in several student organizations. As a member of President's Select, he helped recruit new students to Texas Tech and fostered relationships with prospective students, staff, guests and alumni. As an at-large senator for the Student Government Association, Bernal cultivated partnerships with campus community members to ensure every student's educational and personal growth. Additionally, he served as the climate chair for the Rawls Dean's Student Council and was an active member of the Mortar Board and Scovell Business Leadership Program.
Beyond his involvement in student organizations, Bernal worked as a student assistant for the Office of the Provost and Senior Vice President of Academic Affairs. In his role, he helped with brief book preparation, schedules and logistics, prepared financial reporting documents for the senior director of academic finance, and developed relationships with staff, faculty, government figures and Texas Tech's Board of Regents.
Why did you choose to major in marketing and finance?
I chose to major in marketing because I wanted to develop and strengthen the interpersonal skills that are required in everyday business operations and to gain a better understanding of how to apply research into marketing strategies. I then chose to double major in finance because I appreciated the analysis that goes into making valuable business decisions and wanted to acquire the skillset to apply them in a future career. By combining both majors, I have been able to grow flexible skills that are beneficial to any corporate path I take.
What educational accomplishments are you most proud of?
As a first-generation college student, I knew that college wasn't going to be easy, but it was my job to make sure I did well. I joined the Honors College to find a community of individuals that would push my intellectual curiosity, all while striving for academic excellence. Having the opportunity to study abroad was remarkable and definitely the highlight of my collegiate experience. Seeing how businesses operate outside of the United States while getting to explore so many new places changed my outlook and made me so much more culturally aware. I was also selected to join Mortar Board as a junior which has been an educational accomplishment I am proud of because the honor society represents the top 1% of seniors at Texas Tech based on scholarship, leadership, and service. Becoming a member was a testament to all my hard work paying off.
During your time at Rawls College, who has made the greatest impact on you, and why?
There is not just one person that has made the greatest impact on me. From my professors, advisors, mentors, administrators, and staff, they have each impacted my life and ensured my success not just during college, but preparing me for life after. By having intentional relationships with every single person working in the Rawls College of Business I have come across, I will walk away with life-changing advice and for that, I could not be more grateful.
What are your plans after graduation?
Upon completion of my undergraduate degree, I will be moving to Washington, D.C. to intern for a congressman at the Capitol. Once the internship ends, I plan to either attend law school or begin working in the corporate world to gain experience.
What advice would you offer current or incoming Rawls College students?
The moment you first step into the Rawls, get involved! Whether you join a business organization, a social organization or even a community service organization, cultivating connections with fellow Red Raiders makes your college experience unforgettable. I would also advise Rawls students to take advantage of all the resources available through the Career Management Center, Advising, Center for Global Engagement, Center for Business Communication, and tutoring. Everyone working in those offices is there to help and make sure you get the most of your college education.
What were some of your favorite things about living in Lubbock?
Lubbock is growing and everything you'll ever need in a town is here. From restaurants to shopping, to pursuing any hobbies you may have, living in Lubbock has been great! I wouldn't trade any of the last four years living here while attending Texas Tech because I've had so much fun and made everlasting memories.
Why do you love Rawls College?
I love the Rawls College of Business because everyone cares about your well-being and success. Everyone wants you to thrive during your time in college and make sure you are prepared for the real world after. Having a Chick-fil-A in the building is also a nice perk!