There are a number of different types of careers in the oil and gas industry. As you contemplate your post-high school future, you likely are considering both what you want to do for a career and the educational route you may need to take to get there.
In some ways, the careers in the oil and gas industry can be bifurcated. On the one hand, there are what might be called “front office” careers, jobs in the industry that focus on more basic or essential business matters. These types of positions require different types of degrees, depending on the job tasks. These degrees can include business management, business administration, accounting, law, and so forth.
On the other hand, there are courses of study that specifically are required for careers that truly are unique to the oil and gas industry. These include careers as a drilling engineer, production engineer, reservoir engineer, or sales engineer.
Drilling engineers in the oil and gas industry are charged tasks that include finding viable oil and gas reservoirs. They are also responsible for ascertaining how to go about safely and effectively extracting oil or gas from a particular site. A drilling engineer delineates what equipment and materials are to be utilized to ensure the safe, environmentally sound, and cost effective drilling for and extraction of oil and gas. Job tasks also include estimating potential costs as well as risks associated with a drill. In addition, a drilling engineer also designs schematics and reviews performance once a site is in production.
If you are interested in a position in the oil and gas industry as a drilling engineer, you will need to obtain a bachelor’s degree. Some states also require that you obtain a specific petroleum engineer license. In other cases, an employer may require this type of license.
The median income for a drilling engineer at this juncture in time is $156,990. The U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that the number of positions for drilling engineers in the United States will increase at the rate of 10 percent into the future.
A production engineer in the oil and gas industry is responsible for overseeing the daily operations of an oil or gas production site. Specifically, a production engineer is charged with developing the best strategy to extract oil or gas. This necessitates a consideration of factors that include tactics to maximize profits and lowering operating costs.
A production engineer accomplishes his or her professional objectives by taking samples of reservoir rock and monitoring production on an ongoing basis. The objective is to ascertain the impact of production of the reservoir itself. Oftentimes a production engineer is responsible for working with a variety of third parties, including regulatory agencies.
If you are interested in becoming a production engineer, you will need a bachelor’s degree. As is the case with a drilling engineer, a petroleum engineer license may be required by a particular state or employer.
The U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the median income for a production engineer is $156,990 at this time. Employment for production engineers in the United States is expected to increase by 10 percent into the future.
At the heart of their professional obligations, reservoir engineers in the oil and gas industry utilized advanced mathematical models and computer schemes to predict future production at an oil or gas extraction site. These professionals utilized geological data as well as reservoir simulations to forecast production. The ultimate goal of a reservoir engineer is to optimize production at an oil or gas extraction site.
If you are interested in becoming a reservoir engineer, you need a bachelor’s degree. You may also be obliged to obtain a petroleum license, depending on state law and the requirements of a particular employer.
The current median income for a reservoir engineer in the United States is $149,590. The U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates a 10 percent job growth in this sector into the future.
A sales engineer in the oil and gas industry markets new equipment and technology for exploration and extraction of petroleum. They also assist existing clients in troubleshooting problems with equipment currently being utilized at an oil or gas extraction site.
If you are interested in becoming a petroleum industry sales engineer, you need to obtain a bachelor’s degree. There are no additional licensing requirements.
The U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the median income for a sales engineer in the oil and gas industry to be $107,160. Job growth in this sector is expected to be 7 percent into the future.
Jessica Kane is a professional blogger who writes for Federal Steel Supply, Inc., a leading steel tubing suppliers of carbon, alloy and stainless steel pipe, tubes, fittings and flanges.