The Sea-to-Space Advanced Mapping (S2SAM) research group from the Center of Studies for Surveying Sciences and Geomatics (CSSSG) at Universiti Teknologi MARA Perlis, Malaysia, organised two days of career talks, on 13 and 14 May 2017, with the theme ‘Geomatics Profession in Oil and Gas Industry’. The event was attended by 50 undergraduate students.
S2SAM was represented by one of the hydrographic surveying lecturers, Mohd Zainee Zainal, and was jointly organised with his CSSSG final year undergraduate students who have hydrographic surveying as their final-year project thesis.
Three alumni of the university were invited as speakers. Two of the former students are currently working at PETRONAS and the 3rd speaker is a hydrographic surveying business consultant. He is also the chairman of the newly founded Malaysian Hydrographic Society (MyHS).
Talking about Opportunities
The talk delivered as the first session of the first day was given by Noraini Zulkipli (Figure 2), who is a geoscientist at PETRONAS. She gave an introduction to the roles and responsibilities of the Geomatics Department at PETRONAS and then continued her presentation on ‘Opportunities to work in the oil and gas industry after graduation’.
The second session was presented by Fariza M Faiz (Figure 3), a Geomatics Executive at PETRONAS, and was about ‘Embarking on your career in the oil and gas industry’. She talked about the years of career challenges she faced as an employee at an offshore geophysical surveying service contractor. Now being the ‘client’, she has to look at things from various perspectives in order to meet or exceed the expectations.
The session on the second day was presented by Safaruddin Kamaruddin (Figure 4). He shared his 20 years of experience on his journey as an offshore hydrographic surveyor in the oil and gas industry. He then continued with an open discussion session about the hydrographic society and how it relates to the current employment opportunities, skills development, industry requirements and challenges in the oil and gas industry.
He stayed on the third day for further casual discussions and the forum with the academic staff and students who were keen to listen and explore the way forward in terms of skill training, marketability, project collaborations and sharing technical solutions between the academia and the industry, not only in these tough and challenging times, but also looking ahead in preparation of future requirements.