Article contributed by Nur Atikah Bt Zulkipli, Secretary, UM Student Chapter
On 7 December 2015, an oil and gas forum entitled ‘Reality in the Current Downturn Industry’ was organized by the University of Malaya American AAPG Student Chapter and four panelists were invited. The objectives of this forum were:
- To educate students about the facts of the current downturn of the oil and gas industry
- To advise students on the basic soft skills required by the companies in the industry
- To explain what knowledge students should expect to be ready to enter industry
- To expose students to the reality of working in the industry in the current situation
The forum was divided into three slots. For slot A, each panel gave a talk about their professional background and their role in the industry. The talk started with Tengku Mohd Syazwan, a technical professional specialist from Petronas, followed by a senior petrophysicist of Repsol, Willy Tan and an exploration geoscientist of ConocoPhillips, Izzati Bahri. The last person to end slot A was Robert Shoup, an independent contractor and an Executive Committee member of AAPG. From slot A, the students had a clear understanding of the different roles and job scopes in petroleum geology and also the background of each of the speakers’ companies.
Slot B was the forum proper. In summary, the discussed focused on how graduates are going to survive in this downturn period. The speakers spoke of basic knowledge and skills needed before graduates go into the industry. During the Q&A session which was the Slot C, one of the questions was the recommended level of study to survive and stand out in this turbulent time to get a place in oil and gas industry. Some valuable tips and advice were given by the panelists.