Matheus Pagotti, an information technology major graduating in December, shares about his journey at Texas Tech and Rawls College.
As 2021 comes to a close and the promise of a new year is on the horizon, the fall class of 2021 prepares to begin their journey into the world as the next generation of business professionals, influencers and leaders.
Matheus Pagotti, originally from Brasilia, Brazil, will be graduating in December 2021 with a bachelor's degree in information technology, a concentration in business analytics and a certificate in data analytics.
During his undergraduate career, Matheus was an active member of the Collegiate Entrepreneurship Organization (CEO) and the Association of Information Technology Professionals (AITP). Both student organizations helped shape his business acumen and empowered him to grow professionally. Matheus was also heavily involved with the Texas Tech University Innovation Hub where he participated in multiple programs and competitions.
With the help of the Texas Tech System and Innovation Hub, Matheus was able to start his own company, CritiColl. CritiColl received over $40,000 in grants and funding which allowed Matheus to develop multiple products, interact with customers and lead a team of seven people.
In 2017, Matheus participated in the highly competitive Seeds for the Future program, created by Huawei, a leading global ICT solutions provider. He spent two weeks in China, where he received hands-on experience in information communications technology (ICT) at Huawei's headquarters. Most recently, Matheus lead and organized the 2021 Red Raider Startup Weekend.
Why did you choose to major in IT?
I am deeply passionate about technology. It is an area present in every single industry, regardless of how modern the company is. Technology allows for faster, better, and more efficient processes, ultimately providing more value to customers and companies. Additionally, technology allows for data mining and data generation. Data empowers companies to understand trends, learn customers' preferences and predict future behavior based on historic evidence. Overall, technology makes people's lives more accessible, and I want to contribute to this field!
What did you enjoy most about the IT program?
I was impressed by the amount of hands-on experience I received through my technical classes. I firmly believe that to learn technical skills, you need hands-on experience, and every technical class I had provided me with group projects that resembled real-life examples. These projects allowed me to understand how the technical aspects combine to deliver a technology solution to users.
What educational accomplishments are you most proud of?
My proudest accomplishment was participating and graduating from the Texas Tech Accelerator, a program designed to help faculty and students launch startup companies. The program offers a $25,000 grant, co-working space, and mentors during the yearlong process. I had the opportunity to work closely with five mentors that transformed me into a professional entrepreneur and businessperson. I pitched in front of multiple investors, learned first-hand from seasoned entrepreneurs, met with executives of multi-million-dollar companies and built a product used by over 2,000 Texas Tech students. Additionally, our team accomplished the following milestones: iLaunch Competition finalists, President's Innovation Award, and the Prototype Fund.
During your time at Rawls College, who has made the greatest impact on you, and why?
Barbara Moore and the Career Management Center (CMC) had the most significant impact on me and my career. As a Latino-American whose family members have not experienced the American college system, I was alone during the rigorous job hunt process. Barbara Moore and the CMC supported me throughout the whole process. The CMC provided me with every resource I needed to be successful. I am grateful for them and how much effort they place in ensuring the success of every Rawls College student.
Additionally, I would like to recognize the following instructors as they had a remarkable impact on my career: Radha Appan, Terri Giddens, James Wetherbe and Gary Schwantz. Thank you for always listening to me and guiding me when I did not know where I was going. You motivated me during my darkest days, and your support helped me be where I am today.
What are your plans after graduation?
I have accepted a full-time position with RSM US LLP as a technology consultant. I will also manage CritiColl outside of my full-time duties and hours. I am eager to further my understanding in the IT field and collaborate with customers to achieve a goal and solve problems through technology.
Why do you love Rawls College?
I love Rawls College because of the vast opportunities to connect with alumni and future employers. It is truly amazing how many opportunities there are throughout the semester to have face-to-face events with recruiters who you will see again when interviewing for jobs. I promise you, if you attend these events and follow the CMC's recommendations, you will find your dream job.
What's your favorite Texas Tech tradition?
My favorite Texas Tech tradition is throwing tortillas at the football games because it is so comically random, and I enjoy seeing it happen every time!