Field Drilling Engineer
I was born/grew up in: Kathmandu, Nepal
I now live in: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
I completed my training/education at: University of Alberta
Describe what you do at work.
I use a lot of mathematics for calculations regarding cement. I also use physics and my knowledge of geology to interpret what could be happening inside the well. There is lots of specialized equipment needed for drilling wells. The equipment varies between one well to another and new technologies are always coming on the market. We need to make sure which one would be best for the local conditions. As field engineers we help senior engineers and superintendents make decisions by providing field level data. We also help Site Managers with supervision of contractors, conducting safety and pre-job meetings when necessary.
When I was a student I enjoyed:
How does your job affect people’s lives?
In the future there will be a huge demand of energy. This will happen as many people worldwide are lifted out of poverty and join the middle class. Being a part of the energy supply chain, we are helping to maintain and improve people’s quality of life. My job as a drilling engineer helps get the oil and gas from under the ground to the surface. After it gets to the surface it can later be refined before it reaches consumers.
What motivates you in your career?
Life would be less convenient without cheap and reliable sources of energy. Being a part of the energy supply chain is motivating for me. Drilling for oil and gas is risky and uncertain. This makes my life anything but routine. I also like meeting with the different contractors and people with different perspectives about the operation. I find this interesting.
When I was a student, I would have described myself as someone who:
Describe your career path to this career.
I went to the University of Alberta and got a BSc in Engineering. I then did a (petroleum) Internship with Chevron prior to joining the career full-time. My career did have some unusual twists and turns. I was planning to be either an architect or a civil engineer. But as I learned of the local booming industry in oil and gas and the challenges associated with this industry I got interested in this area. I decided to change my area of study to petroleum engineer after listening to one of the speakers in our university career presentation. Some of my friends had been taking this path as well, so that’s one of the factors too.
What activities do you like to do outside of work?
Read books, biking, listening to music and guitar. I enjoy recreational sports. I’ve volunteered occasionally, although I'm trying to do on a more regular basis.
What advice or encouragement would you give others seeking a similar career?
Always be prepared for something new, interesting and challenging. Never stop learning. Be prepared to ask questions.