You are here:

Geology/Oil industry and geology


Hello Mr. Siddiqui, my name is Aidan Mendonca and I am a senior in high school planning on majoring in geology in college and hopefully end up in the field of petroleum geology. My question to you is about how the oil industry in the U.S. is not doing very good right now; the price of oil is very low and I've been hearing how some companies have been laying off workers because there is no need to find oil at the moment. I would like to know does this fall in the oil industry have an affect on the chance of becoming a petroleum geologist? I know that it could go up when I'm done with college but hearing how there laying off workers is making me kind of nervous.


Historically, the oil industry’s highs and lows had been quite cyclic. However, be sure that the ‘Infamous’ Seven Sisters (the oil exploration giants) would keep on running and kicking till the last drop of the conventional and the unconventional hydrocarbon resources has been extracted from the ground The unconventional resources, many a times of the entire endowment of the Mother Earth, are being looked into for couple of decades. And the USA has maximized on those and has added a million barrels per day to their conventional oil production of the same order of magnitude. You may have noted that the ‘BP’ is now ‘bp’ for almost a decade meaning ‘beyond petroleum’! But by the time you would embark on your professional career the petroleum would still be available, and a hot commodity as well.
Having said that, the times ahead are highly competitive. Only those would survive in the industry that are dedicated and would be having a full command on their subject of specialization. The laying off, in merit based organizations, starts from the lowest rung! As long as you are in the above 50% on the merit list you should not fear of facing lay-off though it applies to all types of organizations).

It is great that you started thinking about your future well ahead of the times. So, without worrying about the lay-offs, work hard, have a full command on the use of computers and your subject of specialization, improve your English communication and presentation skills. Develop team-working attitude, because it is the most important quality, which is appreciated by any Management.



All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Nusrat Kamal Siddiqui (Mr)


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.


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

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.

-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.

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).

©2016 All rights reserved.