Frances undertook a four-year Masters degree at Keele University and graduated in 2005. She works as a geoscientist for PGS Reservoir.
I’ve been fascinated by how the earth works from a very early age. I had an old children’s encyclopaedia with a particular section on how oil was formed, and I used to read it over and over again. Geoscience was an obvious choice for study. During my degree course, I learned to work in difficult situations, with a variety of people and topics and my course covered a vast spectrum of geoscience, including a large proportion of computing. After graduation, I spent three years working as an engineering geologist, which, although it provided me with valuable work experience, wasn’t in line with my long-standing desire to have a career in the petroleum industry.
Getting my current job as a geoscientist was actually surprisingly straightforward. I searched online using the job title, followed by the general location I wanted to work in, and PGS Reservoir came up immediately. After studying the job description, I made sure that my CV contained the information the company was looking for, and spent a lot of time writing the covering letter.
My personal tip for getting on in this industry is to make sure that your CV is targeted and relevant. In my case, work experience was very valuable. It’s becoming increasingly true that it’s simply not enough to have a good degree – there’s too much competition. Interestingly, my prior work experience was not in the exact same sector, but it included a great deal of general business management, and so it was useful. During university vacations, I worked to gain further experience in geological establishments.
A geoscientist needs to be always learning to improve knowledge, so constant training is important. So are having an open mind, being diplomatic, listening to others, and being flexible and self-confident. You need to be able to work methodically and always with the goal in sight.
My role mainly involves the interpretation of 3D seismic data. This requires mapping individual geological horizons through understanding geological systems, quality control, and well data management. There are many progression opportunities available. Greater on-the-job experience over time means that I can carry out work more quickly, more accurately and more efficiently.
I enjoy my job as I’m working with geological systems, which have always captivated me. I also enjoy working closely with geological and topographic maps, either by creating them as part of my job, or viewing published plots. Quality control can become tedious if there are a lot of things that require action and the commute to work can get tiring – living close to the job does make a real difference! PGS Reservoir look after their staff very well, and provide a lot of support.
To progress in my career, I would like to gain a greater understanding of geological structures and situations that are likely to produce hydrocarbons, and know more about how seismic data can be used to be of the best commercial value within the industry.
This website is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with CSS enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets if you are able to do so.