Leaving his Mark: Widener Senior Advocates for Next Generation of Students

Adonijah Allsup ’23 uses his voice and position as a campus leader to advocate for his fellow students.

Adonijah Allsup, wearing a blue fraternity sweater, poses next to a stone marked 1914
Adonijah Allsup, a member of Widener's chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., stands next to a marker coinciding with the organization's founding year.
Adonijah Allsup
Class of 2023
Bachelor's in robotics engineering
  • School of Engineering
Career Plan: Automation Engineer

For many, the COVID pandemic irrevocably altered their perspective on work and life.

For Adonijah Allsup ’23, it changed his whole approach to his college experience.

Before the pandemic, during his first year at Widener, the robotics engineering major would attend class, eat in the dining hall, and return to his residence hall room. 

“That was it. Freshman year I was not involved at all,” he recalls. “There was nothing on my room walls. I was kind of isolated.”

Then came the COVID shutdown and switch to remote learning, and Adonijah, like other Widener students, lost the possibility to get physically involved on campus. Having that option taken away, he committed himself to get involved as much as possible when in-person activities resumed.

“I didn’t want to look back with regrets,” he said. “If COVID had not happened I may not have had the same drive.”

Adonijah kept his promise and today is one of the most active members of the campus community. He is a student leader who advocates for the next generation of students and is leaving his mark on the university.

It’s really important to me to be involved in setting an image, especially for first-generation students or people who are shy or minority students on campus. I want to use my voice. — Adonijah Allsup ’23

Campus Involvement

Adonijah’s Widener résumé is long and varied. He serves as a pride mentor and is part of the 1821 Experience pre-orientation program, which enables first-year student participants to move to campus early, offering a less intimidating way to begin college and a chance to get a head start on their peers with earlier access to resources and support.

This year, the program was extended into the 1821 Experience Living Learning Community for first-year students, and Adonijah is serving as the LLC’s inaugural resident assistant.

“Through the 1821 Experience I can share with students how they can utilize their voice, to make an impact,” he said. “In the 1821 LLC, we can offer students that extra support and they can get connected with resources and people.”

Reviving a Fraternity

In spring 2022, Adonijah helped bring the Gamma Delta Gamma chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., back to Widener. Originally chartered on campus in 2014, it was the hard work of Adonijah and many others that allowed this fraternity to return and flourish as it has throughout 2022-23 academic year.

Adonijah never thought he’d join a fraternity, let alone lead one. But when he learned that Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. was a historically Black organization and dedicated to community service, it resonated with him. He serves as chapter president and is actively working to grow the membership of the chapter.

Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. is the only active historically Black fraternity on Widener’s campus, but just the beginning of more great organizations to come in the near future.

“It’s about creating more spaces for students who might feel this organization fits them better and feels more natural. Widener creates places that let you flourish,” said Adonijah, who also serves as vice president of membership development for Widener’s National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC).

Engineering His Future

As a child, Adonijah liked pulling things apart and putting them back together. After taking a robotics class in high school, he knew this field was right for him.

“Lots of things are moving to robotics so there’s lots of career possibilities,” said Adonijah, who was drawn to Widener as home of the first undergraduate major in robotics engineering in the state. “I just had a feeling that Widener is where I’m supposed to be. It was the best choice for me to grow.”

Adonijah has taken advantage of Widener’s well-regarded co-op program, working fulltime at Pepco, an Exelon Company in Delaware. There, he was responsible for coding, scheduling, and other project management work. The experience was so positive that after his co-op ended, he transitioned into serving as an intern at Pepco.

“I’ve been able to make connections in engineering and it’s prepared me for when I graduate,” he said.

After he graduates, the self-described “car guy” hopes to work in automation engineering in the automotive industry.

Career Plan: Automation Engineer

You May Also Like

Shaylyn Westmoreland smiles for a photo at an industry research conference.

A 4+1 Student’s Journey from Campus Leader to Industry Researcher

Shaylyn Westmoreland
Class of 2023 and 2024

"I chose this project not only because it’s fascinating to use AI, I’ve never worked with it before, but also I have family members that are impacted by MS. I want to be able to do research and help when it comes to providing research to the field."

Lauren Thomas presents her research poster.

The Business of Nurse Leadership

Lauren Thomas
Class of 2024

"You're able to focus on both nursing leadership and take classes in the School of Business to learn about important business aspects."