This year’s International Barrel Award finals took place in Denver, USA at the AAPG 2016 Annual Convention and Exhibition. The finals saw 12 teams of students from all over the world come together to compete for the coveted title. The Middle East region was proudly represented by the King Fahad University of Petroleum and Minerals (Dhahran, Saudi Arabia). AAPG Middle East would like to congratulate the KFUPM team for their tremendous work and efforts as well as for being awarded third place in this prestigious competition.
Dr. Khalid Al-Ramadan (KFUPM Team Advisor):
As the advisor for the King Fahad University of Petroleum and Minerals team, I was confident that they would make it to the final round of the competition due to the level of preparation the students had shown after the regional IBA competition held in Muscat. Since no changes in the slides were allowed, I mentored the students about the importance of body language and facial expression during a presentation. I also gave them strategies in how to handle unexpected questions from the judging panel. Unfortunately, being third in the final was not the goal I wanted to achieve, and therefore I will definitely participate in the upcoming years to achieve first place in the final.
Ardi (Team member):
The Global IBA final was definitely one of the toughest competitions I have ever faced in my academic career. At the same time, it was the best and most exciting experience because we were competing with top petroleum geoscience schools from around the world that were already champions from their sections and regions. The atmosphere of the presentation and Q&A itself was really different because we were facing nine renowned and expert judges from the oil and gas industry. I think the experience that we got from participating and competing in the IBA finals will be really useful when we become petroleum geoscientists in the industry. In addition, we also had a chance to make new friends from places that we may never visit, and exchange stories and knowledge between us.
Malik (Team Member):
The Imperial Barrel Award was one of the most unique experiences I have had during my educational career. The initial preparation when we received the data was hectic but fun at the same time. After we won at the Imperial Barrel Awards in the Middle East Region, we thought we would be relieved, but soon after our victory we realized that now we had to think much larger for the global IBA finals.
For our preparation, we knew we had to create a strategy to do even better this time and to make sure we all stayed focused. Our advisor, Dr. Khalid Al-Ramadan kept us engaged and entertained at the same time to achieve this strategy. With all his extensive efforts we reached a stage where all of the team became the best of friends. We enjoyed one another’s company, as well as the work we did together. Due to this bond, we became focused, as we were all motivated to win the title for the Middle East region, for our university, as well as for ourselves. Then, by the grace of God, we won third place.