DPA Moves Forward With Business Plan

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)

First, I want to thank everyone who has stepped up to provide assistance in these first six months of the 2010-11 fiscal year to move the DPA Business Plan forward. The DPA held its mid-year meeting in Houston in November, and from all accounts the meeting was very successful – so thanks to everyone who provided input into this meeting.

Second, I’d like to provide to you the status of the DPA’s key goals for this fiscal year.

♦ An Expanded International Presence.

As you read in my last column (October EXPLORER), we have established councilors in three AAPG regions. John Brooks (European Councilor) has been very busy on several fronts. The DPA has had reciprocity with the Geological Society of London (GSL) since 1995. In order to ensure that members of each society understand this reciprocity and can easily take advantage of it, John has been working with the GSL to develop a “Mutual Recognition of Professional Status Arrangement” between DPA and GSL.

John, as DPA vice chair for the next AAPG International Conference and Exhibition, slated this October in Milan, is developing a tremendous DPA program. Stay tuned for further updates on the DPA program for the conference.

Bob Shoup, a past DPA president and current Asia Pacific DPA councilor, is getting the DPA message of “Ethics and “Professionalism” out in his region. You may know that Bob has developed a great talk called “Black Belt Ethics.” In October he gave the talk to a group of young professional members of SPE in Kazakhstan. He also gave the same talk in December in Bangkok, Thailand, to SEAPEX, Thailand SEG and the SPE Young Professionals.

♦ Expand Overall DPA Membership.

The Membership Committee and the DPA staff at AAPG headquarters are near completion of phases 1 and 2 of our current membership campaign – our largest membership campaign since Mike Party was DPA president in 2004-05. We are confident that we will reach our goal of 200 new members during the current fiscal year. At this time our membership campaign has generated 66 new DPA applications.

Consider DPA’s motto, “Pride of Professionalism.” It expresses that we strive for technical excellence as geoscientists, focusing on integrity while concerned with energy demands, its conservation, the environment of our nation and the world.

Deborah Sacrey, another DPA past president, stated in DPA’s “Guiding Your Career as a Professional Geologist” manual that being a DPA member can be important for both professional and financial growth, as it focuses on professionalism in one’s career as well as issues on ethics and career management through business aspects of the petroleum industry.

The additional credibility of becoming recognized by one’s peers as a “certified” professional adds an additional boost to one’s standing in the geoscience community.

If you have been thinking of joining the DPA but have just been putting it off, NOW is the time to shed that procrastination and consider becoming certified.

♦ Gathering and Learning Events.

The DPA will host a Town Hall meeting in Shreveport, La., on Feb. 9, spearheaded by Bill Meany, the DPA councilor from Shreveport. The gathering is both a social event as well as a learning experience. We will be discussing DPA’s mission, its interaction with the AAPG and the petroleum industry.

Bill certainly can use assistance from local DPA members to make this a successful event; we are asking DPA members to support this important event and encourage each local Shreveport area DPA member to bring several AAPG members who currently are not DPA members to the Town Hall meeting.

Also, I will be giving two ethics talks during the first quarter of 2011. The first is Jan. 26 at the Houston Geological Society, followed by another in Jackson, Miss., on Feb. 10. These talks provide to all geoscientists – not just DPA members – an opportunity to reflect on an important part of our everyday career “Ethics and Professionalism.”

We as geoscientists are constantly improving our core technical competencies; this is a given. It is one of the cornerstones of a successful career.

“Professional Responsibility” that leads to “Professional Reliability” is the second cornerstone to building confidence in ones products or services. Professional Responsibility encompasses the duties of geoscientists to act in a professional manner; obey the law; avoid conflicts of interest; and put the interest of his or her clients or company ahead of and above their own interests.

These ethics talks also provide the attendees with one Professional Development Hour that may be required for a license by a state agency or certification by various societies.

♦ U.S. Governmental Affairs.

DPA’s Governmental Affairs Committee (GAC) continues to define key issues important to geoscientists and to address these issues with policy makers. The GAC is currently working on two new AAPG statements – one on a national energy policy, and one on U.S onshore access to BLM lands for exploration.

As always, I encourage you to think Volunteerism!

Think of all the good that the AAPG and DPA do for us and our industry. I could not imagine our industry without them. The society offers conferences, the BULLETIN, EXPLORER and Correlator for professional enrichment, information and the publishing of technical papers. The society provides a forum to debate our industry topics, network with fellow geoscientists and much more.

In order for AAPG to meet its purpose, “To foster scientific research, to advance the science of geology, to promote technology and to inspire high professional conduct,” the society and its Divisions, the DPA, EMD and DEG, need volunteers who are excited and energized to give back to the geoscience community.

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The Division of Professional Affairs (DPA), a division of AAPG, seeks to promote professionalism and ethical standards, provide a means for professional certification of petroleum geologists, coal geologists, and petroleum geophysicists, assist in career planning, and improve the professional well-being of AAPG members. For more information about the DPA and its activities, visit the DPA website.

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DPA, GSL Reciprocity

A "mutual recognition of professional status" agreement has been announced by AAPG's Division of Professional Affairs and the Geological Society of London.

The arrangement applies to Active AAPG members who hold DPA certification, and to Fellows of the Geological Society of London who have Chartered Geologist status.

Under the agreement, "fast-track systems" are now in place to help DPA members quickly become chartered members in the London Geological Society, and for Chartered GSL members to have DPA certification.

Qualified AAPG members should contact Norma Newby, AAPG Divisions manager.

GSL fellows should contact Mohammed Jahangir, Fellowship Services manager.

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