Chris Forster

Programme: MSc Petroleum Geoscience

Employment: Graduate Geologist for Occidental Petroleum Corporation

My Masters played a major role in me getting my dream job.

My dream job

"I’m now working as a Geologist for Occidental Petroleum Corporation, operating in the Williston Basin of North Dakota, drilling Bakken wells.

"Prior to this, I worked as a Graduate Geologist for ConocoPhillips UK, in their Aberdeen office. During my first year rotation on the GRAD training program, I’m currently part of the GGRE Geological Operations Group as an Operations and Wellsite Geologist. I’ve spent almost a month offshore in the Southern North Sea so far working as a Wellsite Geologist, though the majority of my time has been working on dry land. My current major role is as the Operations Geologist for a project team currently planning a new well to be drilled in the Central North Sea. This involves researching and evaluating data from offset wells, planning data acquisition strategies, and producing geological prognosis documents. Since starting my job with ConocoPhillips I have also taken part in range of technical, safety, and career management training courses.

"After sending my CV and cover letter to ConocoPhillips HR, I was selected for a first round interview held in the University of Manchester in the School. I was then invited to Aberdeen for a two day recruitment event. The first day involved visiting the ConocoPhillips office for presentations about the company, the recruitment process, and jobs we were applying for. That evening we were taken out for dinner where we got to know more about the work done by ConocoPhillips staff in a more informal setting. The second day involved a prospect evaluation task, which was done in multi-disciplinary teams and went on throughout the day. During this task each applicant was taken for a number of short interviews where HR and technical questions were discussed. I learnt a great deal as a result of this recruitment process, and I was delighted when ConocoPhillips offered me the job.

It all started here

"My MSc in Petroleum Geoscience played a major role in me getting my dream job with Occidental Petroleum Corporation. The knowledge that I gained in more technical and applied fields such as formation evaluation, wellsite geology, and seismic interpretation was vital. I very much enjoyed working in this thriving University environment and vibrant city. I believe that the MSc at The University of Manchester competes very well indeed with any other in the UK, because of the wide range of technical subjects covered and the teaching input of both active academics and experienced industry professionals. Without this experience it would have been difficult for me to develop my skills sufficiently to become a Petroleum Geoscientist working for a major international oil company.”

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