A certificate program may instill the importance of industry safety regulations while teaching the processes involved in the drilling of natural gas, such as gauging pressure and the temperature of the ground. Graduates may be prepared for entry-level floor positions where they assist scientists and operate certain tools. At the associate's degree level, students learn about various drilling and refining methods. Emphasis is placed on industry terminology and safety compliance. Students may also participate in field experiences and internships in which they gain practical experience. Experiential learning involves lab work and field training.
Certificate Programs in Oil and Gas Technology
These programs teach students how to discover, examine and drill for gas reserves. Students learn the history of gas and oil reserves, as well as how they grew over time. They are also taught safety regulations as mandated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and how they relate to the oil and gas industry. Coursework trains students in the procedures utilized in exploration, drilling and processing of natural gas and students learn how to evaluate different sites and determine the appropriate instrumentation needed to drill for natural resources. They also learn how to comply with safety regulations established for the industry. Other coursework can include:
- Oil and gas production
- Processing natural gas
- Oil and gas instrumentation
- Basic electricity
Associate's Degree Programs in Oil and Gas Production
These programs educate students in policies and procedures followed prior to drilling for natural resources. Students learn terminology used within the industry and how to report industry issues. They explore safety regulation compliance procedures established for the industry. In addition to classroom lectures, students complete laboratory and field experiences. Internships may also be included. The curriculum educates students in industrial safety standards and preventative maintenance. Students gain the cognitive tools to determine appropriate instruments to recover and process natural resources from the earth and may also research and prepare reports regarding issues affecting the oil and gas industry. Coursework may also include:
- Safety regulations
- Natural gas production
- Natural gas processing
- Refining methods
- Drilling wells
Popular Career Options
A certificate program in oil and gas technology prepares students for entry-level technician positions. Certificate grads can assist scientists and technicians working on the floor of an offshore oil platform. There are also managerial positions available in overseeing equipment and supplies. Other opportunities for those with a certificate in oil and gas technology include:
- Floor hands
- Tool pushers
- Lease operator
- Gas production team member
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), gas technicians are included in the category of geological and petroleum technicians. The mean salary of geological and petroleum technicians as of May 2018 was $53,300 (www.bls.gov). Job prospects in this field are mostly determined by the price of oil. For example, when the price of oil is low, there is less demand for technicians; however, if the price of oil is high, the demand for technicians expands.
Students who earn an associate degree or certificate degree in gas and oil technology will study courses such as drilling, refining methods, and oil and gas production. Graduates will have the experience to work in the oil and gas industry such as an offshore oil platform.