William M. Majors Energy Management Mentoring Program, Price College of Business,
University of Oklahoma
Oklahoma City oil and gas executive Bryan Hennigan is a big believer in the William M. Majors Energy Management Mentoring Program, which pairs OU students with energy executives for professional and personal guidance.
Hennigan, the vice president for Exploration and Development for Mustang Fuel, has been involved in the mentoring program since it began and has been co-chair for four years. He currently has two mentees and meets them regularly for lunch, a basketball game, or visiting at his office or through phone or text.
“I have always tried to just be there for them,” Hennigan said. “I'm not real big on trying to be the guy that is always discussing the fundamentals of our industry. Being more of a sounding board for them seems to be more useful. I am extremely adamant about strong ethical behavior so I do discuss this with each of them.”
He said many times students are focused on day-to-day activities and may lose sight of some important issues. “I try to make sure they are aware that it's not just about your grades,” Hennigan added. “Getting involved is extremely important. Being a fan of the industry will not be near as rewarding as it will for the individual who is participating to the fullest extent.”
As the father of two daughters, Hennigan appreciates the value of having an adult mentor whom students may be more likely to listen to than their parents. He also sees value from a professional standpoint. “As a participant in the program and a hiring manager, I can better advise the students on what employers are seeking. I have had conversations before a mentee’s first job interview. Hopefully, they found that guidance to be beneficial.”
Hennigan said in many ways his mentees have mentored him, teaching him new things and helping him to be a better person. He praised the many mentors, program speakers and sponsors, such as the Oklahoma Energy Resources Board and Oklahoma City Association of Professional Landmen, for helping make the program a success. “I think sometimes people, both familiar and unfamiliar with our industry, tend to forget how many folks are giving back to our community and our profession they so love,” he said.
About the Program: The William M. Majors Energy Management Mentoring Program matches junior and senior students with energy executives in the Oklahoma City area. Mentors and mentees meet once a month for lunch and to hear a special guest speaker. The group also has a social once a semester.