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Career and Education Opportunities for Petroleum Engineers in Denver, Colorado

Petroleum engineers can find both educational opportunities and jobs in the Denver, Colorado area. The national trend for petroleum engineers sees this job pool growing by about 18.4% over the next eight years. Petroleum engineers generally devise methods to improve oil and gas well production and determine the need for new or modified tool designs.

The income of a petroleum engineer is about $65 hourly or $135,490 per year on average in Colorado. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $51 per hour or $108,020 annually on average. Compared with people working in the overall category of Engineering, people working as petroleum engineers in Colorado earn more. They earn more than people working in the overall category of Engineering nationally. Petroleum engineers work in a variety of jobs, including: drilling engineer, natural gas engineer, and test engineer.

There is one school within twenty-five miles of Denver where you can study to be a petroleum engineer, among sixty-four schools of higher education total in the Denver area. Petroleum engineers usually hold a Bachelor's degree, so you can expect to spend about four years training to become a petroleum engineer if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Petroleum Engineer

Petroleum Engineer video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, petroleum engineers devise methods to improve oil and gas well production and determine the need for new or modified tool designs. They also oversee drilling and offer technical advice to achieve economical and satisfactory progress.

Petroleum engineers talk with scientific and technical personnel to deal with layout and testing problems. They also monitor production rates, and plan rework processes to further optimize production. Equally important, petroleum engineers have to write technical summaries for engineering and management personnel. They are often called upon to evaluate findings to design or test equipment or processes. They are expected to analyze data to recommend placement of wells and supplementary processes to enhance production. Finally, petroleum engineers assist engineering and other personnel to solve operating problems.

Every day, petroleum engineers are expected to be able to listen to and understand others in meetings. They need to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they read and understand documents and reports.

It is important for petroleum engineers to design plans for oil and gas field drilling, and for product recovery and treatment. They are often called upon to assign work to staff to obtain maximum utilization of personnel. They also assess costs and estimate the production capabilities and economic value of oil and gas wells, to review the economic viability of potential drilling sites. They are sometimes expected to direct and monitor the completion and evaluation of wells or well surveys. Somewhat less frequently, petroleum engineers are also expected to inspect oil and gas wells to establish that installations are completed.

Petroleum engineers sometimes are asked to inspect oil and gas wells to establish that installations are completed. They also have to be able to direct the installation and operation of mining and oil field equipment and simulate reservoir performance for different recovery techniques, using computer models. And finally, they sometimes have to layout and implement environmental controls on oil and gas operations.

Like many other jobs, petroleum engineers must be able to absorb the factors involved and a problem and provide a well thought out solution and want to innovate to meet new challenges.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Denver include:

  • Aerodynamics Engineer. Perform a variety of engineering work in designing, constructing, and testing aircraft, missiles, and spacecraft. May conduct basic and applied research to evaluate adaptability of materials and equipment to aircraft design and manufacture. May recommend improvements in testing equipment and techniques.
  • Biomedical Engineer. Apply knowledge of engineering, biology, and biomechanical principles to the design, development, and evaluation of biological and health systems and products, such as artificial organs, prostheses, instrumentation, medical information systems, and health management and care delivery systems.
  • Chemical Engineer. Design chemical plant equipment and devise processes for manufacturing chemicals and products, such as gasoline, synthetic rubber, and pulp, by applying principles and technology of chemistry, physics, and engineering.
  • Civil Engineer. Perform engineering duties in planning, designing, and overseeing construction and maintenance of building structures, and facilities, such as roads, railroads, airports, bridges, harbors, channels, dams, irrigation projects, pipelines, power plants, water and sewage systems, and waste disposal units. Includes architectural, structural, and geo-technical engineers.
  • Computer Engineer. Research, design, and test computer or computer-related equipment for commercial, industrial, or scientific use. May supervise the manufacturing and installation of computer or computer-related equipment and components.
  • Electrical Engineer. Design, develop, or supervise the manufacturing and installation of electrical equipment, components, or systems for commercial, industrial, or scientific use.
  • Electronics Engineer. Research, design, and test electronic components and systems for commercial, industrial, or scientific use utilizing knowledge of electronic theory and materials properties. Design electronic circuits and components for use in fields such as telecommunications, aerospace guidance and propulsion control, acoustics, or instruments and controls.
  • Fire Prevention Research Engineer. Research causes of fires, determine fire protection methods, and design or recommend materials or equipment such as structural components or fire-detection equipment to assist organizations in safeguarding life and property against fire, explosion, and related hazards.
  • Health, Safety, and Environment Manager. Plan, implement, and coordinate safety programs, requiring application of engineering principles and technology, to prevent or correct unsafe environmental working conditions.
  • Industrial Engineering Technician. Apply engineering theory and principles to problems of industrial layout or manufacturing production, usually under the direction of engineering staff. May study and record time, motion, and speed involved in performance of production, maintenance, and other worker operations for such purposes as establishing standard production rates or improving efficiency.
  • Materials Engineer. Evaluate materials and develop machinery and processes to manufacture materials for use in products that must meet specialized design and performance specifications. Develop new uses for known materials. Includes those working with composite materials or specializing in one type of material, such as graphite, metal and metal alloys, ceramics and glass, plastics and polymers, and naturally occurring materials.
  • Mechanical Engineer. Perform engineering duties in planning and designing tools, engines, and other mechanically functioning equipment. Oversee installation, operation, and repair of such equipment as centralized heat, gas, and steam systems.
  • Mechanical Engineering Technician. Apply theory and principles of mechanical engineering to modify, develop, and test machinery and equipment under direction of engineering staff or physical scientists.
  • Product Safety Engineer. Develop and conduct tests to evaluate product safety levels and recommend measures to reduce or eliminate hazards.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Petroleum Engineer Training

Colorado School of Mines - Golden, CO

Colorado School of Mines, 1500 Illinois St, Golden, CO 80401. Colorado School of Mines is a small school located in Golden, Colorado. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 4,488 students and an admission rate of 61%. Colorado School of Mines has bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor's degree programs in Petroleum Engineering which graduated seventy-five, twenty-one, and two students respectively in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Denver, Colorado

Denver, Colorado
Denver, Colorado photo by David Shankbone

Denver is located in Denver County, Colorado. It has a population of over 598,707, which has grown by 7.9% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Denver, 102, is near the national average. New single-family homes in Denver are priced at $223,800 on average, which is below the state average. In 2008, eight hundred thirty-seven new homes were constructed in Denver, down from 1,215 the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Denver are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 25 minutes. More than 34.5% of Denver residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 12.4%, is higher than the state average.

The percentage of Denver residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 53.0%, is more than both the national and state average. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the American Baptist Churches in the USA and the Episcopal Church.

Denver is home to the J F Kennedy Municipal Golf Course and the North Marston Filtration Plant as well as Cheesman Park and Bear Creek Park. Shopping malls in the area include Alameda Square Shopping Center, Boulevard Shopping Center and Brentwood Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Denver can choose from Embassy Suites Hotel Denver Downtown, Intown Suites Aurora and Denver Marriott City Center for temporary stays in the area.