Phelan Graham: Agricultural and Applied Economics

Phelan Graham is from Sanger, Texas, and is currently a senior at Texas Tech University. He will be graduating with an agribusiness degree in May of 2023. In Sanger, Graham developed a love for agriculture in high school by participating in FFA and show cattle.

His grandparents played a role in Graham’s life by living in Lubbock and growing cotton out of Crosbyton, Texas. Not only did Phelan see how the agriculture industry works, but also Texas Tech’s local role in agriculture.

Phelan Graham headshot
Phelan Graham is a member of the third cohort in the MILE program. Photo credit: MILE (Matador Institute of Leadership Engagement) Program (Lindsay Kennedy Ph.D.)

“I grew up traveling to Lubbock,” Graham said. “My grandparents took me to games and showed me around campus.”

Studying in his current major, Graham said he has learned many useful skills including Microsoft Office and data analysis. He said he believes a lot of the things he has learned can be translated into the agriculture industry.

Graham said he chose Texas Tech because of the great education it would provide him. Specifically, within Davis College, Graham said he was drawn to the professors and organizations he would be able to get involved with.

“A draw to Davis College is the community aspect of it,” Graham said.

A program that has impacted Graham in his college career is the Matador Institute of Leadership Engagement (MILE) program. The MILE program provides students with unique opportunities including leadership and professional development experiences. 14 students are selected to enter this program that represent Davis College for a three-semester cohort.

“The MILE program was the highlight of my college career, and I cannot put into words how much gratitude I have for that.”

-Phelan Graham

“Meeting with industry leaders has been great,” Graham said. “You get to see all the different aspects of the industry and all the different sectors.”

Graham said he has had the opportunity to travel to the Rio Grande Valley, Washington D.C, and Austin. By doing this, Graham has seen what agriculture looks like within the state of Texas, and out of the state regarding topics such as legislation and finance.

“It sets you up with useful skills, networking, and connecting with people to help feed and clothe the world,” Graham said. “The MILE program was the highlight of my college career, and I cannot put into words how much gratitude I have for that.”

Graham said he plans to further his career in finance by working at a corporation following his graduation in May. He feels prepared because of his education and help from his advisors within Davis College.