Petroleum Engineer

A petroleum engineer designs, develops, and improves ways to get..

Petroleum Engineer

What does a Petroleum Engineer do?

Median Pay $128,230
Growth Rate 10%
Citation Retrieved in 2017 from BLS.org

A petroleum engineer designs, develops, and improves ways to get gas and oil deposits from below the ground’s surface. They find new avenues to retrieve gas and oil from older wells and offer their technical advice. The also oversee the installation of field equipment, maintenance, and operations.

How to Become a Petroleum Engineer

petroleum engineer

A petroleum engineer must earn a bachelor’s degree. The preference is in petroleum engineering, however those with a bachelor’s degree in chemical or mechanical engineering may be considered as well. Those still in high school should take classes in math and the sciences such as algebra, trigonometry, calculus, biology, chemistry, and physics. This is advantageous because once you begin your bachelors degree you will be required to takes colleges courses in engineering principles, geology, and thermodynamics which are heavily based on mathematic and scientific concepts.

Employers desire work experience once you graduate, therefore look for degree programs that offer internships or cooperative education programs that offer practical experience opportunities. In addition some petroleum engineers earn a licensure though not required for entry-level positions. A Professional Engineering (PE) license is often pursued later in your career. This allows you to have more leadership duties such as supervising the work of other engineers, managing projects, and providing services directly to the public.

To obtain state licensure one must complete the following:

  • Degree from an ABET-accredited engineering program
  • Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam
  • Work experience, typically at least 4 years
  • Professional Engineering (PE) exam

Job Description of a Petroleum Engineer

A petroleum engineer designs and/or develops plans for a gas field and oil drilling and product treatment and recovery. They supervise, design, and monitor the evaluation of new and old wells. They determine and estimate economic value of gas and oil wells and it’s production capabilities.

A petroleum engineer analyzes data in order to advise a company in the placement of wells and ways to enhance production. They evaluate producing rates and if needed plan rework processes to improve it’s performance. He or she would assist personnel or engineering in the solution of operating problems and interact with technical personnel, engineers or scientists to resolve issues in design, testing or research.

A petroleum engineer would coordinate the operation of field and mining equipment as well as the maintenance and installation. They require knowledge in technology and engineering, mathematics, physics and chemistry among other subjects. A petroleum engineer should be skilled in systems analysis, reading comprehension, and complex problem solving.

In this occupation, he or she would go to all relevant sources in order to obtain information needed to successfully complete a job. They have to organize and plan the work with specific goals in mind to accomplish it. A petroleum engineer spends some time in the office, but would spend much of his time on the job site.


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