Petroleum students and workers – how to find and retain a job – Interview with a recent graduate.

Conner Alberch is in the Oil and Gas Engineering Department Texas Railways Commission in Austin. Earlier he He has worked with engineering teams at Haliburton
In Eagle Ford, Parsell Energy in the Permian and Delaware basins of New Mexico, in the Ameredv. He graduated from Texas Tech in Mechanical Engineering in 2017. Conner is not afraid to talk about rewards, as well as the challenges of changing jobs in the oil and gas industry. He spoke about his career, personal ambitions, and where the industry was headed.

Q: What is the current market for Petroleum Engineers (PE)?

The market is competitive. If you are unwilling to move, move to a field-focused or analytical position, or if you are a new college graduate with little experience, or an experienced veteran who does not want to take a pay cut. Job opportunities and opportunities are few in the United States.

Most oil and gas (O&G) vacancies in the United States are listed in Midland, TX (Permian Basin), San Antonio, TX (Eagle Ford) or Houston, TX. Many of my co-workers and classmates have changed industries altogether or moved with JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs to O&G Investment Teams.
, Blackstone
, Or smaller private equity investment companies.

Q: You started as PE but switched to ME (Mechanical Engineer). how? And how did they overcome the challenges of conversion?

The world is changing, new technology is being created every day, and the labor market is changing. The best engineering degree to prepare for the future and to work in many industries is a degree in mechanical engineering. Whether you want to work in the O&G industry (Chevron
, Exxon, ll l), technological advancement (Amazon
, Tesla
You can do it all on Facebook, Aerospace (NASA, Space X), or Wall Street (Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan), with a degree in mechanical engineering.

When I changed my high school diploma, I had to admit that in addition to attending summer school, I needed to stay in college for a year. I graduated with almost 170 credit hours in almost all engineering disciplines and had only 40 credit hours to double my major in fuel and mechanical engineering. The countless college courses and loan hours were vast, and I remember the hard work it took to get them all.

Q: What are the benefits of a PE person staying with a PE program?

Petroleum engineers are known for their high salaries in all bachelor’s degrees. Many young professionals and college students are already flocking to the O&G industry, hoping that they will have a great impact on graduation.

Despite the technological advances that renewable energy sources can provide, it is neither the future nor the future of fossil fuels in the oil industry.

As world power continues to evolve and large oil companies add to their portfolio of renewable energy, oil engineers are shifting to these renewable technologies, such as solar systems, offshore wind farms, and carbon storage and storage.

Q: You’ve got a lot of work, and you’ve lost some.

Near the time of college graduation in December 2017, The O&G labor market was tough after it went from $ 100 / bbl to $ 50 / bbl in 2014. Only 20 percent of 100+ petroleum engineering students have found O&G jobs. I was lucky, I didn’t have much time left to find a job before graduation.

I was hired by an O&G service company in the United States, Haliburton. I was very happy, but the goal of my career at the time was to work with the top O&G operator. When I was a field engineer at Eagle Ford in Holiburnton, I continued to search for places with the operator.

About a year passed in the Haliburton Field Engineering Program and I finally joined the Parsley Energy Production Team. I spent 2.5 years with Parsley Energy before we discovered natural resources
February 2021. Months before I got it, I started looking for another O&G opportunity.

Two weeks before I bought it, I was hired as a contractor in New Mexico, I worked on a 14/7 assembly program, and I supervised the six wells that would be completed.

Q: What did you learn about life from job changes?

Persistent pensions, dismissal packages, the opportunity to find another job if you choose to do so, more time to travel, long-term careers, one step to decide which career path you want to take, making new friends, working on new hobbies and spending. More time with family.

No one is going to retire, “Man, I wish I could work harder, be less, and spend more time at home.” One year paid wages will give you the ability to do this without additional hassle.

My farewell package allowed me to invest in real estate and buy short-term rental in Austin.

I rented my house in Austin, TX and spent a lot of time this year in hotels, airplanes, vacations, swimming, interviewing, living out of luggage, etc. It was my personal choice and price.

Q: What advice do you have to stay employed?

If you want to have a long career in the O&G industry, I recommend working for a large watershed operator such as ExxonMobil, Chevron, bp, etc. that cannot be purchased by a large company. Or middle companies like Kinder Morgan
, Or basin companies such as Valero. Or government jobs in the Texas capital, such as the Railways Commission.

Stay away from service companies that drill wells, frames, and well drills, as they can be very difficult during the industrial downturn.

On the other hand, I enjoy working for small private companies that can afford to buy. As long as you have personal equity or the company offers a significant farewell package, it is a great bargain for a single person.

Q: How do you look for a new job?

To find work in the most difficult markets, you need to persevere and earn a PhD in networking. You may be one of the most advanced petroleum engineers in the industry, but without perseverance and the ability to communicate with people, you will not have a chance. This year, I have applied, emailed, and made more phone calls than most people do in their professional careers. Understanding online from application is a big challenge.

Over the years, I have developed a simple and very effective five-step application process.

1. Find the company and job you want to interview in an interview, in fact on the company’s website, etc.

2. Contact people from the company in the Human Resources department or through LinkedIn.

3. Contact the agent, get their name and send them a short note via LinkedIn.

4. Get the company’s email and address through Google
Search and send email team and executives directly with HR resume.

5. Call the head office of their organization regarding your location and follow up on your previous email.

Applying online is usually the last thing I do. Go straight to the source and be firm.

Q: How much do future bosses hope to value your work?

I believe my team’s biggest characteristic is to organize big projects and streamline processes and make money for the company’s future success. I do not like simple things that do not make money or make a difference. I am not only a graduate or highly educated paper push engineer, but I also hope that a calculated risk-taking creative and entrepreneur will be valued.

Q: What are your short-term and long-term career goals?

I want to continue my goal as a professional engineer and continue as an engineer in the ON&G industry for a short period of time (<5 years). In the medium term (5+ years) I see myself in the branch of a private equity investment bank.

I want to be an executive on the board of OGG Energy, which makes important financial decisions over the long term (10+ years). To retire, I have seen myself as a senior university professor or dean.


I think we will see an increase in demand for petroleum engineering students in the near future, following all the recent redundancies, the reduction of PE students and the conversion of many people into industry. Meanwhile, O&G companies are investing in renewable and drilling and manufacturing services in artificial intelligence. Examples based in Europe are bp, TotalEnergies and Shell. US-based companies include ExxonMobil, Occidental and Chevron.

By acquiring and implementing renewable energy to expand their portfolios with many of the largest O&G companies in the world, PEs must expand their knowledge into renewable energy. As renewable forces increase, PE, who has a good understanding of solar systems, offshore wind turbines, and carbon storage, will be in a strong position.

Quote: “If there is no future change, there will be no guarantee in the future. ”


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