North-east students step into the world of oil and gas


21st June 2016

SCHOOL pupils from across the north-east will this week find out what it’s like to drill for hydrocarbons, live offshore and experiment on heavy oil as a huge number of companies open their doors to youngsters as part of OPITO’s Industry Awareness programme.

The oil and gas industry skills organisation aims to help broaden the career horizons of the next generation through a planned timetable of activities, allowing 80 pupils from 22 schools to spend time with company personnel and experience a variety of activities first-hand.

Sessions throughout the programme, which runs from today (Tuesday 21st June) until Thursday 23 June, include taking part in engineering and heavy oil challenges, drafting field development proposals, an interactive tour of an oil rig and operating a drilling simulator.

Companies participating in the event, which targets secondary school students aged 16 and over from the Aberdeen City, Aberdeenshire and Moray areas, include ABB, Aker Solutions, BP, Conoco Philips, Enermech, Maersk Training, Proserv, Statoil, Sparrows, Stork and TOTAL.

Tove Stuhr Sjoblom, senior vice president for Statoil’s UK and Ireland operations said: “We are very pleased to support this initiative by OPITO to help young people gain an insight into the exciting career opportunities the energy industry has to offer. Despite the current economic challenges, this industry is here for the long term and we are committed and passionate about providing accessible energy for all. Young bright minds, combined with new technology and innovation, will be fundamental for driving our industry forwards.”

OPITO UK managing director John McDonald said the appetite to inspire young people is still very much there: “The industry as a whole has been experiencing many difficulties as it adjusts to the lower oil barrel price and redundancies have been widely reported. However, the North Sea basin still has significant recoverable hydrocarbons. It is vital that we create a skilled and competent workforce for the future, ensuring that our industry operates effectively and efficiently and remains a major contributor to both UK and Scottish economies.

Inspiring the next generation remains high on the agenda for OPITO, Government and the industry and to have the support of these organisations at such a crucial time is very encouraging.’

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