Robert Gordon University students collaborate on energy industry project

Robert Gordon University students collaborate on energy industry project

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04 April 2017

Students from Robert Gordon University’s (RGU) School of Computing Science and Digital Media and Aberdeen Business School have joined forces to take on the two-day PetroChallenge event in conjunction with industry partner, NExT (A Schlumberger Company), which specialises in oil and gas training.  

PetroChallenge is an educational event for students, with the purpose of developing their knowledge of the oil and gas industry and their interest in pursuing professional careers in the sector.

PetroChallenge utilizes the upstream learning simulator, OilSim, in which teams compete and collaborate to discover and develop hydrocarbons.

The group of 38 students from a variety of RGU’s suite of Masters courses in Oil and Gas (MSc Energy Management, MSc IT for the Oil and Gas Industry, MSc Oil and Gas Accounting, MSc Oil and Gas Finance and MBA Oil and Gas Management) split into smaller teams and competed in the pursuit of hydrocarbons in a fictitious offshore field.

Each team became established their own oil and gas company and throughout the competition moved through various challenges to explore, develop and produce oil and gas while achieving the highest return on investment possible.

Ines Arana, senior lecturer at the School of Computing Science and Digital Media, commented: "This was a fantastic opportunity for students from two different schools within RGU to come together and work in collaboration.

"Projects such as this give the students a real flavour of what they might expect in a real-life work environment and the challenges they were set were very contextual, giving them extremely good experience with the help and support of the Schlumberger team.”

The challenge took them through the various stages which lead to the production of hydrocarbons - exploration, licensing, prospecting and bidding, partnership development, depletion planning, facilities planning and construction.

The challenge ended with prizes awarded to the team which maximised their company value and the team which earned the title as the most credible company throughout.  

Meghan Clark, NExT Training Instructor: "PetroChallenge is a very unique and diverse event that allows students from all levels of education to enter the world of oil and gas business through an interactive simulation.

"OilSim is a learning tool that consolidates theoretical learning into a practical and interactive experience and ultimately takes you right through the upstream process whilst tackling subjects like economics, geosciences, engineering, business and teamwork.

"The feedback from students who took part in this PetroChallenge event has been positive and we hope to continue this learning experience for students at RGU.”

Ayodele Asekomeh, senior lecturer and Postgraduate Programme Leader, Aberdeen Business School: "The training highlighted for our students the implications of interdisciplinary project choices and decisions by replicating real-life quantitative risk and return considerations and subjective and/or qualitative factors that impact on the credibility and negotiations of upstream operators and stakeholders.

"It illustrated practical applications of various business principles and theories from the classroom in furtherance of the Aberdeen Business School’s vision for offering internationally recognised practice-led professional education and knowledge exchange, with an outstanding reputation for employability.”