GeoIntro 2008: A Glimpse of Geology was organized by the members of American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG) Student Chapter University of Malaya and generously sponsored by Murphy Oil Corporation, Schlumberger and Shell. The objective of the event was to promote geology to Matriculation and Form 6 students. Through this event, we hope to raise these students’ awareness on geology and cultivate their interest in this field, as well as expose them to this course in which they can pursue their further studies in the near future.
The event was held successfully on 23 February 2008 from 9.00am till 4.30pm and was attended by about 80 students from University Malaya Matriculation Centre, SMK La Salle and SMK Bukit Bintang.
AAPG Advisor, Prof. Denis N.K Tan started off the event by giving a very inspiring opening speech. He gave a brief introduction on the AAPG Student Chapter University of Malaya. In his speech, he pointed out that generally students nowadays are not familiar with geology and therefore he hoped that GeoIntro 2008 will influence more students to take up geology. According to him, geology is full of adventures and it is a lifelong learning process. Besides that, he also added that, to fully benefit from the event, participants should take this opportunity to ask questions regarding studies and career prospects in geology as there is a high demand in oil and gas and mining geologist within these 5-10 years.
Next, Pebrina Puspa Sari, the Organizing Committee Director gave a short speech about GeoIntro 2008 and its objectives. She explained that the objectives of GeoIntro is reflected in the tagline, A Glimpse of Geology, which is to briefly expose students to the interesting world of geology and to give them an idea on what geology is all about. She urged the participants to grab this opportunity to learn and gain as much knowledge as possible.
The first talk of the event was given by Geology Department of University Malaya Senior Lecturer, Dr. Nuraiteng Tee Abdullah. She started off by sharing her study background and a brief introduction on geology. She also touched on the various fields related to geology such as geophysics, sedimentology, structural geology, paleontology, environmental geology etc. Apart from that, she also introduced the course structure for Bsc in Geology and Applied Geology. She ended her talk by sharing the interesting history of the Geology Department which started in 1955 in Singapore, to the present one in Kuala Lumpur, University Malaya.
Following that, Mr Muzli Hussain, a Senior Manager of Exploration with Petronas, took his turn to talk on the career prospects of geology undergraduates in Petronas and the work responsibilities and working life of a geologist. He also introduced the background of Petronas as a national oil and gas company as well as touched on Petronas as a business entity and a petroleum producer. According to Mr. Muzli, Petronas plays a good role in contributing to the well-being of the nation and its people.
The next speaker was Mr. Govan Gangatharan, a Production Geologist with Shell. His talk revolves around his interesting work experience in Shell. He started his talk by sharing about his days as a geology undergraduate in the Geology Department of University Malaya right up to his working experience in Shell. He also mentioned about Shell training programs, the benefits of working in Shell and the working environment in Shell, which includes lots of traveling to beautiful destinations, and has captured the attention of the participants. In his talk, he also urged students to take up geology as it offers a very rewarding career.
For the Student Sharing Session, Ong Hock Kim, the Geology Department student representative and President of American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG) Student Chapter University of Malaya, presented a very lively and interactive session. The presentation was more informal in nature so as to encourage the students to interact and take part in the presentation. He included short video clips in his presentation and shared his experience as a geology undergraduate so far. He also presented on fieldwork and the facilities and study environment in Geology Department. During this session, the students interacted by asking lots of questions.
After the Student Sharing Session, a movie titled “Living Rock” was played. The movie showed the various types of rocks and phenomenon that makes up the Earth. The movie provided an enlightening visual stimulation to the students and it made them better understand the whole concept of geology.
Last but not least was the speaker from Jabatan Mineral & Geosains Malaysia (Mineral & Geoscience Department), Tuan Hj Zainol b. Husin. The focus of his talk was career prospects other than in the oil and gas industry. He mentioned careers in the Mineral & Geoscience Department which will need geologists in the near future. He also talked about the work scope of a geologist and his own experience as geologist after he joined the Minerals & Geosciences Department.
After all the talks by various speakers were delivered, the students proceeded with the Tour and Exhibition Session. During this session, students were guided on a tour of the Geology Department and were brought to the exhibition halls. There were 4 exhibition halls set up for this purpose. One was in the Main Hall of the department where Petronas displayed posters on the career prospects and introduction to Geology. Another exhibition hall is set up in the Mineralogy and Petrology Lab which displayed the various hand specimens such as rocks, minerals and fossils. The next exhibition hall is in the Paleontology and Stratigraphy Lab which displayed microscopic specimens and incorporated the use of microscopes. The Mineralogy Lab is turned into another exhibition hall which displayed fieldwork gears and a mini presentation on geology fieldwork. Throughout this session, the students were given brief explanations on the displayed objects and they were encouraged to touch and play with those objects to satisfy their curiosity. This session is more like a fun and interactive session between the student participants and the geology undergraduates to encourage communication between them. The session aimed to provide a thorough understanding about geology by displaying and explaining geologically related objects. This also provided the students with a hands-on experience in geology course.
GeoIntro 2008 ended at 4.30pm after a group photo-taking session.
As a conclusion, GeoIntro 2008 managed to deliver its objectives of exposing the Matriculation and Form 6 students to geology and instill their awareness and interest in this field. The students left not only with GeoIntro 2008 t-shirts but also with a whole new understanding and knowledge in geology, which we hope will benefit them and encourage them to take up geology as their course of choice in the future. We would like to thank all our sponsors; Murphy Oil Corporation, Schlumberger and Shell for their generous support to this event. We also extend our gratitude to PETRONAS and JMG for their participation and assistance.
Wong Yien Lim
Organizing Committee Secretary
GEOINTRO 2008: A GLIMPSE OF GEOLOGY