NATURAL-GAS TECHNOLOGY EGCC program awaits approval by state board

Staff report


Eastern Gateway Community College is preparing to offer a new program for the booming oil and gas industry.

The Natural Gas Technology program will help to develop the workforce of the future.

Jerry Klinesmith, dean of business, engineering and information technologies, humanities and social sciences, said the program has been presented to the Ohio Board of Regents for review and approval.

In 2011 a study conducted for the Ohio Oil & Gas Energy Education Program projected that oil and gas producers will spend more than $34 billion on exploration and development, midstream, royalties and leasing through 2015.

The OOGEEP study also concluded that this industry will create nearly 205,000 jobs in the state of Ohio during that period, Klinesmith said.

Additionally, the study predicted that oil and gas industry wages in the state will exceed $12 billion in annual salaries and personal income by 2015.

“Such projections are significant for Ohio’s high school and college graduates, displaced workers and career changers who wish to find a good-paying job in the oil and gas industry and stay in the region,” Klinesmith said.

“Such opportunities were often unimaginable in Eastern Ohio before the exploration and development of the Utica Shale, but it is keeping workforce developmental personnel, such as us at Eastern Gateway, very busy developing oil and gas curriculum for their students,” he said.

The potential instructor for the program is a possessor with a bachelor’s degree in geology and a master’s in petroleum and natural-gas engineering. Additionally, the individual has more than 20 years’ experience as an engineering professional in the oil and gas drilling and production industry, including academic endeavors, Klinesmith said.

This individual also has excellent problem-solving and technical communication skills coupled with a demonstrated record of supervision and teaching, Klinesmith added.

Projected course offerings include an introduction to the petroleum and natural gas industry, petroleum geology, drilling methods and operations, drilling fluids, formation evaluation, casing and cementing, horizontal directional drilling, hydraulic fracturing, the proliferation of natural gas and the optimization of natural-gas production.

The Natural Gas Technology program at Eastern Gateway will offer students a comprehensive understanding of the oil and gas industry.

The curriculum also includes fundamental science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) to provide the graduate with a strong foundation, he said.

“The graduate of the Natural Gas Technology program will thus be prepared for a rewarding career in this vital energy sector,” he said.

Information about this upcoming program may be obtained by calling the college’s Admissions Office at 740-264-5591 or 800-68-COLLEGE, ext. 214.

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