“UTPB provided an affordable, convenient, and navigable opportunity for me to pursue a college degree.” – Jesse Arenivas, BBA in finance graduate and business leader   

Jesse Arenivas spent his youth in Midland, TX, a short drive up I-20 from Odessa, the home of The University of Texas Permian Basin. Given this, it seems a natural consequence that he might at least consider an energy career one day. But Arenivas never envisioned the level of success he’d achieve within the industry. In 2022, he was named chief executive officer for EnLink Midstream, an “independent midstream energy services company that offers supply and marketing services to oil and gas producers and consumers.” 

Arenivas generously shared his time to explain how UTPB’s Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance program prepared him for professional success, his reasons for giving back to the University, and the promising prospects he sees for energy professionals. 

UTPB Helps Set the Stage for Leadership Success 

Arenivas firmly believes that his BBA in finance program prepared him to move up in the business world. “UTPB provided a personalized, entrepreneurial experience,” he explained. “Many of my professors had industry experience and were able to connect academic theories with real-world applications. UTPB provided a diverse student population of both full-time students and working professionals. This diversity fostered collaboration, further enhancing working experience with academia and prepared students for early career success.” 

Arenivas credited UTPB as having a strong and lasting influence on his own leadership style. “The faculty and staff were always available and dedicated to student success. That resonates today as I ensure I’m available to understand the issues and needs of EnLink Midstream, the company I lead. [In that role], I strive to make sure that my team has the tools necessary to succeed.”    

Giving Back to the University 

Arenivas graduated from UTPB in 1996, and throughout the decades since has been an avid supporter of his alma mater. He shared with us the reason for his philanthropic efforts: “The Permian Basin plays a key role in world energy markets. UTPB provides a great education and plays a vital role in developing the skillsets needed to sustain the workforce requirements of one of the world’s key economic regions. Further, it continues to provide a conduit to higher education for many first-generation students, as well as the continuation of higher education for many working professionals in technical careers. I believe UTPB will continue to grow and thrive because it provides access for both types of students, especially those seeking careers in energy.”      

Rewards of a Career in the Energy Industry 

Arenivas enthusiastically recommends a career in energy due to the industry’s ongoing importance in everyday life, evolution, and growth: “The energy industry can be misunderstood. The truth is, we provide vital resources that power homes, hospitals, schools, and businesses, and almost everything you touch is a byproduct of this industry. At the same time, we know it’s extremely important that we operate in a safe and environmentally responsible manner. Responsibly managed fossil fuels will play a critical role in our economy for decades to come. Plus, the industry is innovating more than ever to move to lower-carbon-intensive products and reducing emissions from all industries. Investments in technologies like carbon capture, renewable power, and biofuels will help achieve carbon mitigation goals. Finally, the industry has a track record of providing well-paying jobs, which is important to consider as a college student.” 

Sage Advice for Current and Future BBA Students 

What words of advice would Arenivas offer a UTPB student? That depends on the stage of their education. “[For current students], slow down and enjoy the experience. Soak it all in and seek opportunities to apply your academic foundation into real-world situations. Find a mentor, build a network, and seek intern opportunities early.” For future students, he said, “You have to find the environment that suits you and allows you to thrive. UTPB provides a great recognized educational foundation and is an ideal size for someone looking to get involved and be a part of something great.”     

A BBA in finance can provide the foundation for a rewarding business leadership role in practically any field. Earning this degree online from UTPB offers even more advantages: 

  • Complete coursework on your own schedule. 
  • Earn your degree from practically anywhere in the world. 
  • Maintain your professional and personal commitments while in the program. 

Get program details and/or apply now!