SPE-KSA Student Chapter in Focus: King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals
By Nasiru Salahu Muhammed – SPE-KFUPM board Member
By offering a variety of delivered activities, the SPE-KFUPM Student Chapter aims to improve students exposure to both technical and non-technical facets of the energy sector and boost awareness of extracurricular activities at the King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM). This will give KFUPM students the opportunity to participate in voluntary activities that will enhance their future resumes.
Two SPE-KFUPM & ARMA-KFUPM joint field trips were organized. The first field trip (March 13, 2022) was a visit to the National Oilwell Varco Company. The tour included a brief introduction to drilling basics, drill bits, and the bottom hole assembly, where students were shown the drill bits manufacturing processes. In the second field trip (March 29, 2022), Alkhorayef Petroleum Company hosted both the SPE and ARMA KFUPM chapters along with students and faculty members. During this visit, assemblies of logging tools, design, manufacturing procedures, and functions were discussed to enhance the understanding of the session participants, with emphasis on the use of the tools in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Subsequently, the SPE-KFUPM section continues to widen its horizon as it undertook the first-ever Energy4me initiative, where high school students were encouraged to pursue a career in Petroleum Engineering and Geosciences related programs. In this event, basic but high-tech lab equipment was used to showcase the concept of the Darcy experiment in a bit to provide the high school students with hands-on experience to boost their morals.
In addition, the SPE-KFUPM in its weekly and special seminar series, hosted Prof. Mohan Kelkar, from the University of Tulsa (October 26, 2022), where a technical talk titled “Energy Transition” was discussed. This event was timely, as the students, researchers, and faculty members enjoyed the role it has to play to achieve a near-net-zero energy mix in the future.
SPE-KFUPM was chosen by SPE–KSA in collaboration with the College of Petroleum Engineering and Geosciences, to host the 𝐃𝐚𝐭𝐚 𝐒𝐜𝐢𝐞𝐧𝐜𝐞 𝐔𝐧𝐢𝐯𝐞𝐫𝐬𝐢𝐭𝐲 𝐁𝐨𝐨𝐭𝐜𝐚𝐦𝐩. This boot camp hosted students from different universities and majors across the Eastern Province such as KFUPM, Prince Mohammad Bin Fahd University (PMU), Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University (IAU), and Al-Asala Colleges. This boot camp was kicked off by Mr. Ridwan Jalali from Saudi Aramco who presented a comprehensive overview of Python, Data Science, and the requisite tools for all the participants to flourish in academia and professional industry. The event lasted for 3 days (30 October – 01 November 2022) and covered Python Fundamentals, Data Science and Scientific Computation and Computer Vision & Machine Learning.
The 2022 ATCE was exceptional for SPE-KFUPM, the chapter received the 2022 Presidential Award on the 4th of October. Alongside the chapter’s recognition, Mr. Ahmed Gowida won first place in the 2022 International SPE Paper Contest – Ph.D. Division at ATCE 2022. In addition, the SPE-KFUPM Petrobowl team participated in the international Petrobowl Championship.
KFUPM SPE Student Chapter has actively participated in the 2023 Gas and Oil Technology Showcase & Conference (GOTECH) held in Dubai, UAE between the 13th and 15th of March. KFUPM SPE Student Chapter members have won several contests including regional student paper contests (SPC) for the Middle East and North Africa region (MENA). KFUPM SPE Student Chapter have achieved the 1st place in SPC for both BSc & PhD divisions, 2nd & 3rd places in SPC for MSc division, and 1st place in GOTECH SPE Student Experience presentation contest. Moreover, KFUPM SPE Student Chapter members will represent the region in BSc & PhD divisions during SPE international SPC in 2023 ATCE.
The chapter’s plan is to increase the number of SPE members within the college and the university at large. This will boost the chapter’s morale to provide technical seminars on current energy sector issues such as thermal energy, hydrogen storage, carbon capture and storage, advanced data analytics and more to increase the number of SPE members. Moreover, SPE-KFUPM will have more enriching non-technical seminars such as health and environment-related topics. Filling the gap between the industry and academia is also another future objective that will be achieved through conducting trips to warehouses and R&D centers for the oil & gas companies.
The Presidential Award for Outstanding Student Chapter recognizes the highest-ranked 5% of the 400+ student chapters all over the world. Receiving the 2022 Presidential Award for outstanding Student Chapter is a testament to the hard work and dedication of the SPE-KFUPM student chapter. The support by KFUPM-CPG, our commitment to providing students with valuable technical and non-technical experiences, along with the success of the team effort, sets us apart and drives us towards excellence. This award not only recognizes our achievements of the past years but also serves as a call to action to continue our efforts in creating more achievements led by our young future scientists and engineers. We are proud to have such a dedicated and driven group of students.
– Dr. Sulaiman A. Alarifi – Faculty Advisor, SPE-KFUPM Student Chapter