My Career is Uncertain after Bachelors in Petroleum Engineering

Raghuram Sukumar Career 7 Comments

uncertain career pertoleum engineeringI’m posting Aditya’s comment as a blog post. He’s having tough time finding a job for Petroleum Engineer.


I am an undergraduate in US. I would not deny that every semester has indeed helped me evolve into something better. I would really encourage everyone to try and get into good US universities for their Bachelors.

There are scholarship and research opportunities in the labs. But scholarships should be seen as a supplement rather than the main body.

Choosing an unconventional major like Petroleum Engineering, as compared to the traditional mechanical and CS etc., I am facing the problems for choosing this untrodden path.

The only measure of this hefty investment is a job after one graduates. In my opinion, there is hardly any discussion regarding options for international undergraduate students.

For a field like petroleum, it turns even more challenging.

Lacking job experience and internship opportunities in US, it is really difficult to get a full time.

The companies would not even look at resumé because international students need sponsorship.

Going back to India is another nerve wrecking task as there are hardly any oil companies into exploration and most of them go to campuses for hiring.

Companies hardly check their online application systems as they have no vacancy left. Not getting acknowledged, all these years seem to be a waste. I am in dilemma about what to do as of now.

I want to request everyone to upscale the discussions, so that those who join US universities in future can reap the benefits from experiences of current students.

So, that was Aditya’s story. Here’s my comments.

When I see a student say “lack of internship opportunities or  or unable to find a job”, its fault with your approach towards job search.

I have the following questions for you

  • How many hours per week do you spend on your academic activity?
  • How many hours did you spend on your job search?
  • How many new connections did you add for your professional networking in last 30 days?
  • How long did you spend on your resume?

Lot of students in F-1 Visa have the same issue. They spend 2 years chasing the grades, but not developing the skills required to find a job.

I  have said so many times in the past and repeating it again.

Your goal as an international student is to get a job at end of your degree. Which means, you have 2 full years for job search. You need to have a specific job search plan.

Hoping that your degree and resume will get you a job is just  expecting to throw a penny into a tank full of water and expecting to land in the exact location you wanted it.

Petroleum Engineers are highly paid compared to Software Engineers.

Read the following articles to kick start your job search


  1. I ain’t a graduate from US university. But, does this post imply that spending the same amount of hours for academics to job search and making new professional connections will solve the problem?

  2. My GRE score is 300
    CGPA-6.89 (no backs)
    2 internships ( one for 45 days and one for a month)
    planning to apply fr: University of texas, Arlington
    University of texas, San Antonio
    Clemson University, south carolina
    please suggest me some universities asap…

  3. hi i did my mca in dec 2009 and have 3 year teaching experience, i want to know whether i go for ms or phd..and my age is 29 , i am looking for university in which i got admission with scholarship. please reply

  4. I recommend you (if possible) to pursue a Masters in Petroleum Engineering. After that (or even if you did not) you can go to South American countries with good reserves of oil, like Venezuela, Ecuador, Brazil, etc… Even if you do not have experience, skills or any intership in your resume, you will have good opportunities over there, or in other regions like western Africa (e.g. Camerun). I wanna ask you: Have you sent resumes to oil companies in states like Texas or Arizona? or to foreign countries?

  5. I am chemical engg student looking for masters in petroleum engineering. I have no oil and gas industry experience. So will that help me to get job in upstream oil and gas industries in US? will they look at my resume as i have no experience in field?

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