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Career and Education Opportunities for Petroleum Engineers in Chicago, Illinois

Many educational and employment opportunities exist for petroleum engineers in the Chicago, Illinois 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.

Petroleum engineers earn approximately $39 hourly or $81,850 annually on average in Illinois. Nationally they average about $51 per hour or $108,020 annually. Compared with people working in the overall category of Engineering, people working as petroleum engineers in Illinois earn more. They earn more than people working in the overall category of Engineering nationally. Jobs in this field include: natural gas engineer, drilling manager, and oil well engineer.

The Chicago area is home to 180 schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Chicago where you can get a degree as a petroleum engineer. Petroleum engineers usually hold a Bachelor's degree, so it will take about four years to learn to be 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 Chicago 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.
  • Agricultural Engineer. Apply knowledge of engineering technology and biological science to agricultural problems concerned with power and machinery, electrification, structures, soil and water conservation, and processing of agricultural products.
  • 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 Engineer. Design, develop, and evaluate integrated systems for managing industrial production processes including human work factors, quality control, inventory control, logistics and material flow, cost analysis, and production coordination.
  • 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.
  • Manufacturing Engineer. Apply knowledge of materials and engineering theory and methods to design, integrate, and improve manufacturing systems or related processes. May work with commercial or industrial designers to refine product designs to increase producibility and decrease costs.
  • 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

Illinois Institute of Technology - Chicago, IL

Illinois Institute of Technology, 3300 S Federal St, Chicago, IL 60616. Illinois Institute of Technology is a medium sized school located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 7,404 students and an admission rate of 57%. Illinois Institute of Technology has a master's degree program in Petroleum Engineering which graduated one student in 2008.

LICENSES

ENGINEER, PROFESSIONAL

Licensing agency: Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation
Address: 320 West Washington, Springfield, IL 62786

Phone: (217) 782-8556
Website: Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation

LOCATION INFORMATION: Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois
Chicago, Illinois photo by Dschwen

Chicago is situated in Cook County, Illinois. It has a population of over 2,853,114, which has shrunk by 1.5% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Chicago, 114, is well above the national average. New single-family homes in Chicago are valued at $200,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, three hundred eighty-one new homes were built in Chicago, down from eight hundred seventy the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Chicago 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 commute to work is about 35 minutes. More than 25.5% of Chicago residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Chicago is 11.6%, which is greater than Illinois's average of 10.5%.

The percentage of Chicago residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 57.6%, is more than both the national and state average. Southlawn United Methodist Church, Southern Missionary Baptist Church and Lakeside Evangelical Church are all churches located in Chicago. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Muslim Estimate and the Lutheran Church.

Chicago is home to the Five Crossings and the Wrigley Field as well as Monticello Park and Wilson Playground. Shopping centers in the area include Lincoln Village Shopping Center, Market Place at Six Corners Shopping Center and Kimbark Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Chicago can choose from Extended Stay America, Embassy Suites Lakefront and Cottage Inn for temporary stays in the area.