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How Do I Become a Completions Engineer?

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  • Written By: Jessica F. Black
  • Edited By: Shereen Skola
  • Last Modified Date: 25 November 2016
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A completions engineer generally works in the gas and oil industry; to become a completions engineer, you may be required to have a bachelor's degree in petroleum engineering. Duties performed by this position may include testing and evaluating wells for production, troubleshooting equipment malfunctions, and overseeing the production process. The mass production of oil is based on drilling and extracting oil from wells and experience in this field may also be required to become a completions engineer. Some companies may require at least five years of related experience and an advanced degree in a petroleum related discipline.

Before enrolling in advanced courses, you may need to complete prerequisites in mathematics, geology, physics, and chemistry. Some of the fundamental courses that are generally required include introduction to petroleum engineering systems, mechanics of materials, and thermodynamics. These courses may prepare you for other coursework in the field including petroleum reservoir fluids, oil or gas, and environmental law, and several course levels of drilling and completions. Field practicums are often needed to complete a degree program and may include well test analysis, natural gas processing, and advanced simulation.

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Internships may also prepare you to become a completions engineer and you should consider applying for several positions during your undergraduate program. Although some internships are based in an office, you may need to be prepared to perform duties on-site of an oil rig or other locations where oil is extracted. During your internship, you may assist senior officials in risk assessment, safety procedures, and well testing. Since experience is generally required to become a completions engineer, you may want to consider participating in field work in several areas of the industry. These opportunities can provide you with hands-on training and help to familiarize you with the field.

Once you become a completions engineer, you may want to seek entry level employment with oil and gas companies; some choose to continue their education while gaining experience. A master's degree in petroleum engineering or a related field may decrease the amount of experience required by future employers. There are various associations and non-profit organizations in this field and joining these types of groups may help you find employment. You may also consider inquiring about employment at petroleum consultation firms and commercial or residential gas companies. There are numerous Internet forums for completions engineers seeking employment and you should consider networking through field related sites.

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