Geology as a career? - Aussie Stock Forums

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  1. #1
    dj_420's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Central Coast

    Default Geology as a career?

    hi guys

    im writing to all the people who are involved in geology within the mining industry.

    i will be completing my business degree at the end of this year, although whilst at uni and working in hr i feel i have not found my calling as such.

    i have been looking through other types of degrees and think i may do a science degree with possible major in earth science.

    my reasoning is that i have always enjoyed science subjects and excelled at those in school, i enjoy a variety of working conditions both indoors and out, i am looking for new challenges and think it would be a great place to wotk within resources industry, my understanding of resource companies and hence understanding of the resource sector in the ASX would increase dramatically.

    i want to ask those involved in the industry

    - what job are/were you involved in
    - is it what you expected
    - what you enjoy most about the job
    - what you dislike most about the job

    originally when i left school i began a science degree majoring in marine science, i ended up leaving uni to work full time (in hindsight a bad choice)

    now i have nearly completed my business degree and i feel it has been to generalised and has not focused or honed in on any one area.

    i would appreciate anyones input

    thanks guys
    Money isn't real George, it doesnt matter... It only seems like it does (Blow)

  2. #2

    Default Re: Geology as a career?

    Does anyone on the forum work in the resources industry?
    Money isn't real George, it doesnt matter... It only seems like it does (Blow)

  3. #3
    Let the money work for you!
    Join Date
    Apr 2007

    Default Re: Geology as a career?

    Well my dad works in the petroleum industry, abit different to geology, bt close. He works as a manager on a offshore oil rig. A lot of the stuff relies on yrs of experience, as a young gun, u might find it hard to get into the industry. bt these couple of yrs has been particularly good, with the high energy and commodity prices, there is a skills shortage in the area.

    If you are young with no family then its definately a good industry to work in, because it offers good money, bt u'll be away from home very often. e.g my dad is on for 1mth then get a mth off at home.

    I dunno if these will help u, as after all it is a different industry.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Geology as a career?


    Most graduates will spend an inordinate amount of time processing old data, sitting on rigs and doing the hard yards (read not glamorous).
    Now is definately the time to be in the industry though as conditions are vastly
    improved compared to even 5 years ago.
    Assuming you are thinking resource geo' (as opposed to petroleum) expect to spend a lot of time on your own, in the elements (read red hot and f%&ckin freezing) and poring over maps/logs/samples (often after sitting on a rig for 12 hours).
    Assuming your young and preferably unattached the best way forward is to live and breathe it as you have to do your time in different regions before you'll go very far.
    Handy if you know your way around 4x4's and camping etc, don't have a problem with going to the toilet behind a bush (if you can find a bush) and aren't easily offended.
    Do you live anywhere near a mining region?
    The best geo' I ever met used to work as a drilling offsider on his breaks from school (handy coin too) so after four years he knew what to expect in the field, understood rock dynamics and had significant credit with us (hence we made life easier for him ). He was a senior geo' at 27.
    You'll either love it or hate it (we had one break down and cry one day simply due to the isolation).
    I went underground after I finished exploring but didn't like it- too used to wide open spaces and sunshine. Saw more gold and physically seeing faults, geodes, structures and deformation was cool, instead of just seeing the sample smashed to bits or as core, but I still preferred the surface and moving around.
    I'd really recommend trying to get on as a field assistant or something for three months (offsider if your more the physical type) because you'll get to see first hand and you'll have plenty of time to talk to those @ the coalface.
    Saw quite a few graduates come to the realisation that it wasn't for them after only six months which was sad.
    Best of luck

  5. #5

    Default Re: Geology as a career?

    China Shows Wisdom By Training Many More Geologists Than Lawyers
    Source: www.minesite.com
    Date: May, 2007

    An extraordinarily perceptive article has come our way from, of all places, Pittsburg Pennsylvania , and it is written by Byron King for a website, blog, or whatever called Whiskey & Gunpowder.
    It appears that Byron recently attended annual convention of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists in Long Beach, Calif. It was a gathering of about 5,200 geologists from around the world, and many others who work in related fields dealing with the world’s oil and gas industries. In addition to the formal members of the AAPG, the convention hosted many hundreds more individuals from related industries such as the oil service companies, geophysics companies, and the like, as well as from government and academia.

    One of the things that struck him about the assembled throng was just how collectively well educated the whole group was. Many members of AAPG with one or more master’s degrees in scientific and technical fields. The numbers of Ph.D. holders, combined with the broad spectrum of research fields in evidence, was
    entirely impressive.

    At this convention Byron met Mr Wang, from the University of Geoscience in Wuhan, China. Mr. Wang is a marine geologist, and teaches the subject at the university level. He is very smart, as Byron found out when they sat next to each other on a bus, and during a field trip to look at the rocks of the Palos Verdes
    Peninsula. The two of them discussed numerous subjects of a geological nature, subjects of which he has an excellent grasp, in both English and Chinese. Here is some of what was discussed.

    Byron asked Mr. Wang how many students attend the University of Geoscience in Wuhan.

    “About 20,000,” he replied.

    “You have 20,000 students majoring in geology? “ Byron asked, stunned at the number.

    “Oh, no,” Mr Wang replied with a smile. “Many of our students study in other fields of science, such as physics, chemistry, biology. And we even have a few students who study art and theater.”

    “So how many people do you have studying geology?” Byron asked.

    “ About 10,000,” he replied.

    “10,000? In what fields of geology do the students pursue their studies?”

    Mr. Wang replied, “We teach basic scientific background such as maths, chemistry, and physics. Then we teach geological concepts like stratigraphy and mineralogy and structural geology. Then we take the students into specific fields such as oil and gas geology, petroleum engineering, mineralogy, mining geology and engineering, civil engineering, geological engineering, marine geology, geochemistry, geophysics, and whatever other fields branch out from those subjects.?

    “Do your students have jobs when they finish their studies?” Byron asked.

    “Oh, yes,” replied Mr. Wang. “Our students graduate, and many go to get advanced degrees in China, as well as in Australia, Europe, and the U.S. We also send many students into the oil and gas industry, the mining industry, engineering fields, and the like. We have graduates working at geological projects on every continent of the Earth, in the mining industry and in the oil extraction industry, building roads and dams across China, and as far away as Arabia, Africa, and South America, and even performing research in Antarctica.?

    “So, since you have 10,000 students, is your school the main school for the study of geology in China?”

    “Oh, no,” Mr Wang replied. “Ours is one of three geoscience universities in China. The other two universities are comparable to ours. And many other universities have their own college of geology. Beijing University, for example, is a very great school that is attended by many of the best students in China. It has a college of geology with about 4,000 students.?

    Can you give me some idea of how many students are studying geology in China today?”

    Mr. Wang thought for a moment. “If you add it all up,” he said, “there are about 40,000 or 50,000 students studying geology in China today at the university level. Maybe more, but I do not want to give you a number that is too high. Many of these students might not become geologists, because they will go into civil engineering or some related field. The Premier of China, Wei Jiabao, is a geologist, by the way, and worked as a geological surveyor in his youth. And many other students, such as those studying chemistry or physics in the university, might eventually become geochemists or geophysicists. But we are currently training about 50,000 or so geologists in China,
    across the nation.”

    That number is well over 25 times the number of college students who are studying geology in the U.S., which includes foreign students enrolled at U.S. institutions, and that is after something of a surge in enrolments in geoscience departments in the past two or three years. Back in 2004, according to statistics published by the U.S. National Science Foundation, there were fewer than 500 degrees granted in geology and petroleum engineering by all U.S. universities combined.

    This is an important development. There is a revolution occurring in the scientific approach to understanding the Earth. The fields that make up geology, and related Earth and space sciences, are currently undergoing major advances that promote understanding of our planet as a number of interrelated systems. Many new realms of scientific investigation are emerging through the study of the connections and interactions between the atmosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere, cryosphere, solid Earth, and near space.

    Furthermore, geoscientists are playing critical roles in recognizing the extent and magnitude of human impact on the entire Earth system. And this understanding is
    gaining new context via the growth in knowledge of processes on other planets. So the more people who understand at least the basics of geology , the better for everyone.

    It has to be acknowledged that almost all of the ‘easy’ oil and gas, minerals, metals, energy, and water resources of the Earth been located and tapped. The future of modern civilization depends on how well any given group of people, from any given nation or organization, can understand how best to extract or harness the resources of the Earth that are not ‘easy’ to access. So going forward, there had better be some geology majors coming out of the academic sweatshops, and the more the better.

    No comparisons can be made with Blair’s dumbed -down Britain where young people are persuaded to study such subjects as media studies, spin doctoring and bicycle riding at what are called Universities, but in the States law schools have awarded an average of about 40,000 law degrees annually to aspiring lawyers. So for each geologist that U.S. academia cranks out, the law school industry mills something between 50-100 lawyers. At the extreme end of the ratio, there are 100 new lawyers graduating from U.S. universities for every new geologist coming out into the work force.

    Why is it that China is training armies of geologists while the U.S. is training armies of lawyers? And is there something ominous about that fact? Let’s examine a few aspects of this situation.

    The U.S. and China are about the same size in terms of land area so it is not that China needs more geologists to cover more ground. By the criteria of raw acreage, Russia and Canada should be graduating divisions of geologists. But Russia and Canada, the largest and second largest nations in the world by land area, are not doing this. The Chinese are leading the world in the training of large numbers of geoscientists by a country mile.

    In terms of population, China has 1.3 billion people and the U.S. has something over 300 million. So China has slightly over four times the population of the U.S. On a per capita basis, it might make sense for China to train more geologists. But still, there is a difference between China having four times the population and 50 times the geologists in training.

    The U.S. has built its interstate highway system, much of which is now clogged with automobiles and trucks speeding hither and yon, while China has a way to go yet.. If China were to burn as much gasoline on a per capita basis as does the U.S., China alone would require the entire world’s daily oil output and then some. But that is just extrapolating the present into the future, and things are going to change dramatically long before something like that could occur, if it were even possible.

    And China is building, building, building - roads, houses offices skyscrapers, factories, you name it. It is said that China is building the equivalent of a new Houston every month. In 2006 China added more electrical-generating capacity than exists in the entire state of California, where they have been building generating capacity for 100 years. So China is growing, and growing fast.

    So why does China train so many geologists and the US so many lawyers? One might think that in an advanced post-industrial state, such as the U.S., which has exhausted a significant fraction of its national energy and mineral resources over the past two centuries, the need would be for more geologists to locate and assist in securing new energy and mineral supplies...

    [ The article was slightly shortened to fit ASF post dimensions ]

  6. #6

    Default Re: Geology as a career?

    thanks very much for answers guys very informative

    have always enjoted outdoors stuff, 4 wheeling, camping etc, in army reserves also so that has shown me a fair bit.

    i was talking about mineral geology rather than oil and gas geology.

    so yeah it does sound very isolated. i just like to thoroughly research something before diving headfirst into it.
    Money isn't real George, it doesnt matter... It only seems like it does (Blow)

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