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Spotlight on the range of careers in the oil and gas industry

04 October 2019

As a final year law student at The University of Aberdeen, I recently had the opportunity to undertake a fantastic three-week summer placement at The Oil and Gas Technology Centre (OGTC).  

I applied to the OGTC as I had a keen interest in the oil and gas sector, more specifically practicing law within this area. I was also intrigued by the work the OGTC do. Prior to my placement, I thought practicing law in this area would be very finite, however I was pleasantly surprised at the wide variety of projects and areas I got to become involved in. I quickly realised that everything was interlinked in the sector, which allowed me to gain knowledge in multiple subject areas.  I found myself researching public and private laws – it opened my eyes to the difference between in-house lawyers and private practice whilst also giving me exposure of working alongside multiple department areas such as finance, engineering and project management. Throughout my placement, the important role the OGTC play in maximising economic recovery in the North Sea became evident.

During my time here, alongside legal and commercial work, I also got involved directly in oil and gas related subjects. I had the opportunity to visit the National Decommissioning Centre to gain an insight into the innovative technological research that the OGTC and the University of Aberdeen are undertaking to develop the way the sector decommissions. With decommissioning being at the forefront of oil and gas in the North Sea now, it was great to see collaboration on new technology working towards a cleaner seabed. Further to this, I was also was involved in key stakeholder meetings, which gave me great exposure to the sector.

Life at the OGTC was a continual journey of education. I found ‘lunch and learn’ sessions extremely beneficial and really unique – unlike any other workplace I have been at. I thought it was a great idea for the whole team to consistently learn new things every week that may be out with their subject expertise. 

Alongside experiencing the ‘behind the scenes’ process of the OGTC’s projects, I was lucky enough to see a resulting project created from the funding provided to Ocean Power Technologies – the PB3 PowerBuoy. It was surreal to see how far the sector has come with new technology and it is transparent that innovative technology is the key to unlocking the full potential of the UKCS.

Overall, I had a great experience at the OGTC, it was a lovely and welcoming place to be part of and thank everyone for making it such a positive experience full of learning.  I would thoroughly encourage anybody considering a career in this sector to go for it and be part of the revolutionary transition into new technology.

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