With the price of crude oil hovering around $30 per barrel, administrative changes are coming to the petroleum engineering department. The entire department is being moved from the Dwight Look College of Engineering to the College of Liberal Arts, as their new college aligns much better with the petroleum engineering curriculum and professional prospects.
The big move comes after a disastrous year for the oil and gas sector, with a 61% decrease in operating oil rigs. Graduating petroleum engineers have had a very difficult time obtaining jobs in an economy, where 60,000 Texans lost energy jobs in 2015. Preliminary surveys from the Petroleum Engineering department have indicated that more graduating petroleum engineers have applied for graduate programs in business than have obtained full-time positions in the energy sector.
Dr. Katherine Banks, Dean of the College of Engineering, said, “The Dwight Look College of Engineering has always taken pride in our graduates’ ability to find meaningful employment, and petroleum engineering has fallen short in this regard. We felt it would be best if PETE was moved into a college with the organizational resources to help prepare graduates for a different job market. The College of Liberal Arts has a large network of retail positions waiting for these excited graduates, as they will no longer be able to find employment in engineering.”
The move will actually increase the number of math courses needed to fulfill the PETE degree plan from one to two. Off-campus tutoring services are boosting their capacity of PHIL 240 tutoring sections in anticipation of the influx of PETE students who will struggle in logic. Additionally, Mays Business School has hired multiple administrators to preemptively deal with the increase in transfer applications.
“It doesn’t really matter for me, because I’m switching to finance anyways. I’m going to have investment banking firms crawling over themselves to hire me. After all my 2.3 in PETE is basically a 4.0 in any other major,” said PETE sophomore Tim Stein, who insisted on being paid for this comment. “The biggest change is the amount of writing intensive classes I will be taking. They’re so much harder than anybody else’s classes. When I get upset, I just complain and remind myself that I’m destined to make over $150k annually in a couple years.”