Petroleum Engineering Degree

Petroleum engineering programs are highly specialized and vital to our economy. Students learn how to devise methods of extracting gas and oil. They become knowledgeable about the production capabilities and economic value of oil, and they learn how to develop plans for drilling.

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Petroleum Engineering

Both bachelor's and master's degrees in petroleum engineering are available. Earning a degree in petroleum engineering online may also be a possibility for students who need more flexibility.

What Do Petroleum Engineering Students Learn?

Students in petroleum engineering programs learn everything about gas and oil production, from pricing to extraction. Some core concepts that may be presented while obtaining your degree are: 

  • Engineering and Technology 
  • Mathematics 
  • Physics 
  • Chemistry 
  • Administration 
  • Economics 
  • Law and Government

Job titles within this field include petroleum engineer, reservoir engineer, drilling engineer, petroleum production engineer, operations engineer, and completion engineer.

Did You Know?

  • Consumers in the U.S. pay considerably less for gas than other comparable countries.
  • Some gas in the U.S. is mixed with ethanol, a plant-based fuel source. E10 gas is a blend of 10 percent ethanol and 90 percent gasoline.

Famous Celebrities with Petroleum Engineering Degrees

Famous people in the petroleum industry may not be gracing the covers of magazines, but they do have one thing in common. They are all very wealthy and some of them are from the same family. Here are some of the wealthiest names in the oil industry:

  • Wealthy Russian oil billionaire, Roman Abramovich, is also the owner of an English football team, the Chelsea Football Club.
  • Mikhail Khodorkovsky was the former CEO billionaire of the Russian Petroleum Company, Yukos.
  • An American billionaire hedge fund manager, T. Boone Pickens, is known as an investor, activist, oil man, and author of The Pickens Plan.
  • Two Rockefellers make this list. Both David and John Rockefeller are American billionaires. The wealthy Rockefeller family made much of their money from oil. They are both also famous philanthropists.

Is Petroleum Engineering Right for You?

What kind of person pursues a degree in petroleum engineering? Are you the kind of person who can be successful in this degree program?

First and foremost, this program involves a lot of science, math, and problem solving. From physics to chemistry, petroleum engineering majors spend a lot of time in the lab.

Those studying in this field also need to have a strong interest in and aptitude for economics.

The production of gas and oil is closely tied to global markets and needs to be considered in any solution. If science, math, and economics are areas you enjoy studying, then a degree in petroleum engineering may be worth considering.

Skills Needed for Petroleum Engineering

There are some basic skills that anyone who excels in petroleum engineering programs will need to have.

  • Strong Science and Math Aptitude – As in any engineering area of focus, math and science play a big role.
  • Complex Problem Solving – The energy question is a big one in the country right now, and petroleum engineering majors need to have a desire and ability to solve some difficult problems.
  • Judgment and Decision Making – It is important to consider all sides of each solution, including the relative costs, pros, and cons.
  • Critical Thinking – Petroleum engineering students need to use logic and reasoning when devising new solutions.

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