In The Media

This past summer...

By Julie Wong • Schulich Leader at McGill University
Winter 2014

This past summer, I worked as a Field Engineer Intern for Schlumberger, the largest oilfield services company in the world. Based in Red Deer, Alberta, I worked with the Cementing segment in casing oil wells after they have been drilled. This meant that I spent a lot of time working on the oil rigs themselves, which was an awe-inspiring experience. 

Red Deer was a much smaller city than any I had previously lived in, but I still thoroughly enjoyed exploring the town and discovering gems like the Red Deer Farmers' Market. My co-workers were very welcoming and regaled me with colourful stories from all of their diverse backgrounds. It was such an interesting experience to talk to people about how they got into the oil and gas industry and their feelings on the topic. 

Of course, any experience in the energy industry requires being cognizant of its societal and environmental importance. However, I feel that having first-hand experience in the oil and gas industry allows me to form more informed opinions on these issues as well as giving me an expanded view of the many different factors that comprise these complicated problems. 

Due to the physical and potentially hazardous nature of the job, safety is one of the biggest priorities for Schlumberger and other oilfield service companies. In fact, over the course of my internship, I created a safety manual demonstrating injury prevention techniques specific to the cementing segment's activities. Creating the manual required consulting a lot of different people, from the operators working the cement pumps at the oil rig to the kinesiologist trained in injury prevention. The final result was something I was very proud of, and my supervisor was delighted to have something that could be distributed to all of the cementing segments in Canada in order to help reduce incidents. 

Overall, my internship this summer was a fantastic experience and I feel so lucky to have had this opportunity. I believe that the same qualities of initiative and drive that made me a Schulich Leader also helped me have such a successful internship: a STEM experience like no other.