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The importance of pursuing industry-recognized licenses and certifications

Career advancement comes from developing both your soft skills and your technical ones, and industry certifications are a fantastic way of developing and proving the latter.
Richard Belote, director of software development for FuelFX, demonstrates a virtual reality simulation at the company headquarters in Bellaire, TX. (Michael Starghill, Jr.)

How virtual reality can help the oil industry’s worker shortage (video)

From a non-descript office in the Galleria area, it’s possible to walk around a refinery, an oil rig and even an offshore platform — thanks to high-tech tools taking advantage of virtual reality.
Noble Corp. opened a new training center in Sugar Land, Texas in August 2013. The state-of-the-art facility uses realistic simulations to keep employees up-to-speed on operating offshore drilling equipment. (Ryan Holeywell/Houston Chronicle)

Inside Noble Corp.’s new high-tech training center (photos)

As offshore drilling contractor Noble Corp. focuses increasingly on the most high-tech rigs, training has become even more critical to the way it does business.
Chisom Anyanwu, 15 (left) and Blake Gomez, 14 (right) work on a project about Laos at the Energy Institute High School in Houston. It is the first high school in the nation to focus on careers in oil, gas and other energy sources and technologies. (AP Photo/Houston Chronicle, Melissa Phillip)

Houston’s Energy Institute thrives in inaugural year

Houston school district leaders are confident the Energy Institute — the first high school in the nation to focus on careers in oil, gas and other energy sources and technologies — will join the ranks of the city’s elite high schools and fill a crucial gap in training Houston’s energy workforce.
A CHC helicopter

How to escape from a sinking helicopter (photos)

Helicopters are the leading cause of death for offshore oil and gas workers, far outpacing fatalities from explosions and heavy rig equipment. Houstonia magazine goes inside the underwater escape training course that offshore workers complete before taking their first trip.

Exxon launches broad push to train Texas chemical workers

Exxon Mobil on Friday will announce a $500,000 commitment to recruit, educate and train thousands of new workers in Houston for rapidly expanding chemical operations along the Texas coast.
David Holt, president of the Consumer Energy Alliance

Guest Commentary: Maximizing opportunity in US energy development

David Holt, president of the Consumer Energy Alliance, notes that the oil and gas industry is facing an immediate and serious dearth of skilled workers. He says expanding math and science education in higher education is only part of the equation. We must capture a student’s interest in energy and the sciences at a younger age.
John Rynd is Chief Executive Officer and President of Houston-based Hercules Offshore.

Guest Commentary: Diminishing workforce poses big challenge for offshore firms

John Rynd, CEO and president of Houston-based Hercules Offshore, says the company is attacking the workforce shortage on multiple fronts, including trainee programs and military recruitment.
Diamond Offshore Drilling President and CEO Larry Dickerson. (Gary Fountain/For the Chronicle)

Q&A: Diamond Offshore prepares to staff rapid offshore growth

Diamond Offshore Drilling executives say they are preparing for an era of growth, with the number of offshore rigs expected to jump about 25 percent by 2017. Diamond CEO Lawrence R. Dickerson spoke to FuelFix about the challenges of the rapidly growing offshore industry.

Survey reveals most valued skills for oil and gas workers

A new study by the Society of Petroleum Engineers reveals the essential skills for getting a job and getting ahead in your oil and gas career.