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Question
Dear Sir ,

I would like you to Please opine about a few qualms I have about starting a career in the Field of  Geology .

1) Seeing current and analyzing future scenarios which one is a better field to opt for ?    a)  Petroleum Engineering b) Geo physicist ?

2) A friend of mine , as soon as he came to know of my aspirations to go for the geology related field referred me a link of the veteran Geologists who have some really alarming experiences to share with ; especially when it comes to family Life .

This is the that Link I mentioned above  ::
http://geology.about.com/u/ua/peoplecareers/homelifeanswers.htm

Hence , I would Like to seek your opinion about this threatening hear & Say that the Family Life suffers the most if one opts for Petroleum engineering / Geo physicist as Frequent travelling and distant field jobs take heavy toll on family bond . Is that so ?


I would really appreciate your guidance
Thanks
Aashar

Answer
Aashar,

It depends from person to person and the field one has opted for, or landed in. In petroleum geology, mud-logging, monitoring of drilling on rigs, seismic or geological surveys may take you away from family for a longer period of time . So avoid joining these. The problem is that due to paucity of job opportunities (for mediocre students in general) the fresh graduates may be forced to join with the service companies, as above. The jobs with service companies are difficult to cope with as far as the family life is concerned.

Petroleum Engineering (PE) and Geophysics (Gyp)are rather safe in this respect.

PE is more of an office job. They may have to go to the well-site in the early phase of their career to supervise electric/production logging etc, but it is essential to learn the procedures of acquiring the data before one can make confident interpretation. And the field stay is 2-3 days, any way. The more you establish your self as a contributing PE the more chances you have to stay in the office!

The same applies to GYP. Learn the field data acquisition first. Then prove yourself a reliable and effective interpreter of geophysical data (seismic, gravity-magnetic etc). Now the interpretation is done all on a workstation by using sophisticated industry software. The more you establish your self as a contributing data interpreter the more chances you have to stay in the office!

So the merit is the first criteria for entering any profession through a company of your choice, and then surviving as you would like to survive. You must get a CGPA above 3.5 (<80%) to get short-listed for an interview. And it is not just the CGPA, but your knowledge/sound concepts, which will take you to the next step. A written test/presentation will expose you if your concepts are not clear. Your merit will help you land in an established company and then it is all up to you how to chalk-out your career!

If you manage to get a chance of working with service companies like Schlumberger, go for it. After 5+ years of experience you may be able to get a job in an established exploration company where you are likely to be more in the office.

Hence, both PE and Gyp are safe with respect to family life, but then it is all up to you!

Merit and hard-work are essential to survive in this (or any) highly competitive field.
And let me assure you, you will not be disappointed. Earth science is a fascinating subject.  

Best of luck.  

Geology

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Nusrat Kamal Siddiqui (Mr)

Expertise

I am a petroleum exploration geologist with about 40+ years of diversified experience. I can answer questions on stratigraphy, log interpretation, field studies based on set of logs and core results, general geology etc. Can provide guidance for career planning in earth sciences. Can not help in questions about hard rocks, igneous petrology & mineralogy, sequence stratigraphy and seismic.

Experience

Petroleum Exploration - field geology, stratigraphy, prospect generation, interpretation of satellite imagery (visual), log interpretation.

Organizations
Retired in May, 2006 as Senior Manager Exploration from Pakistan Petroleum Limited after serving 26 years. Since then continuing in active service with petroleum exploration companies.A cumulative experience of about 40 years covers 30 years in petroleum exploration, 5 years hydrogeology experience in Libya, and about 5 years of dam geology in Pakistan.

Publications
-AAPG Bulletin (Vol.88, July, 2004); paper on Sui Main Limestone (Eocene), a prolific gas reservoir in Pakistan. -Have presented papers on diversified topics ranging from spirituality, flood control, remote sensing and off course geology in France, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, UAE, Kashmir, India and Pakistan that have been published in respective Special Proceedings. -ONGC Bulletin(India) Vol. 44, Number 2, December, 2009; Chapter 19.A & 19.B on basin architecture and stratigraphy of Pakistan, p.402-474.

Education/Credentials
BSc Honours in Geology and Master of Science in Petroleum and Structural Geology. PGD from ITC, The Netherlands.

Awards and Honors
-Remained Active Member of AAPG from 1990-2006; founding member of PAPG (a local affiliate of AAPG). -Life member of SEGMITE & AGID, and Senior Editor of SEGMITE magazine. -Member of the Board of Studies, i. Department of Petroleum & Gas Engineering (BUITMS, Quetta), and ii. Geology Department, Sindh University, Jamshoro. -Member of Stratigraphic Committee of Pakistan. -Represented Mining Journal, UK in Pakistan till 2007. -Chairman of Annual Technical Conference (ATC)& Oil Show, an SPE/PAPG annual event, in 2003. -Chairman Technical Committee (ATC, 2002).

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