As a native of Kazakhstan I am very aware of the potential mineral and chemical wealth of my country. Our oil and gas reserves are of massive proportions, but we suffer at present from a shortage of truly skilled and trained technical staff to develop the extraction industry. I am a student with a strong academic background in chemical technology and I am very eager to further my knowledge and expertise through a degree from a top-ranking university, with a view to returning to my homeland to help to realise its potential for great wealth and all that this could bring to my fellow citizens. It is clear to everybody that the functioning of the modern world depends on the availability of oil and gas, and will continue to do so until a new energy technology emerges. As known global reserves of oil reach their peak production capacities there will be few more important jobs in the world in the immediate future than that of the drilling engineer. My ambition is to complete a degree and then work for a major exploration firm. I know that this is a field which deals with the most complex technical and engineering challenges in the industry, and would involve working in the most extreme conditions on earth – the arctic, the desert and in the deep oceans. It is a challenging prospect, but a very rewarding one, offering the chance to work with some brilliant thinkers and to use technology beyond last year’s dreams.
I have a good grounding in maths and the sciences, and won prizes in chemistry Olympiads. I have also undertaken a number of work placements that have given me some experience of the oil industry. I spent some time at a large oil chemistry refinery, working in the delayed coking unit. I was an operator in the catalytic reforming unit, and most recently, I worked as a full time operator in the processing workshop, involved in the secondary processes of oil distillation and also in the section which dealt with catalytic cracking, and the rectification and treatment of process condensate. These working experiences gave me good insight into the complexities of the petrochemical industry, and helped to deepen my understanding of some very difficult processes, as well as giving me a taste of working as part of a team of technicians.
My main interest at present is in drilling engineering, particularly in offshore drilling and drilling fluids. As part of my chemical engineering course I studied oil deposit chemistry, which included drilling fluids, their properties and preparation and their usage under various conditions. Reading R. Stewart Hall’s