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What It's Like to be a Professional Land Management Major

November 3, 2017
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The Wyoming Student Chapter of Professional Land Managers is one of the best ways to get to know fellow students.

By: Sam Stein

When you look up what a Landman is, the definition that will pop up is: “an agent employed by an oil or gas company to secure leases of mineral rights and land drilling.” While this definition isn’t wrong, it doesn’t fully encompass everything that a Landman is and what they do. The Professional Land Management (PLM) program at the University of Wyoming allows students to explore every aspect of being a Landman.

The Basics: The first few years in the Land Management program is all about learning the basics. Students learn more of the business skills that are necessary to understand in the field. These skills include but are not limited to: accounting, management, finance, and marketing. Learning the business side of the industry first eases students into more focused and industry specific classes they take later on.

The Introduction: After picking up some business skills (and a little bit of math), students are introduced to some of the basic foundations of being a Landman. There are courses specific to the PLM program that allows students to do things such as a chain of title so that they learn how to go to the courthouse and find landowner information. This is also the time in which students learn about ethics in the workplace, which help improve on some “soft skills” that aide in being a good Landman.

The Finale: In the last few years of the PLM program, the content becomes more in-depth and industry specific. Students will take part in courses such as Oil and Gas Law, Property Law, Contracts, and Negotiation. These classes’ help students have a finer understanding of the intricacies of the energy industry, and help them learn to navigate laws and policies that will be presented to them in the field.

The Opportunities: Since the School of Energy Resources (SER) is so unique and diverse, opportunities are around every corner. Oil and Gas companies are always looking at our students for internships or jobs since our program is so specific to the energy industry and trains students to have the proper knowledge when they graduate. Companies will often come to campus to speak directly to PLM students to help them understand what it takes to be a Landman. These are also prime opportunities for students to engage with industry professionals and get their names out there.

The Atmosphere: The faculty at SER is very student-oriented and is always willing to engage with the students and help them figure out how to navigate school and the industry. Everyone is welcoming and excited to work together when people need help with classes or life in general. The PLM program is into teamwork, hard work, and having a good time.

The Students: For the entire duration of their time at school, students have many resources to supplement their knowledge of the industry and amp up their resumes. The PLM students have a student chapter specifically catered to the program. The Wyoming Student Chapter of Professional Land Management (WSCPLM) is certified through the American Association of Professional Landmen and is one of the easiest ways to get to know fellow students, professors, industry professionals, and more. The WSCPLM is pretty laid back and allows students to learn more about the industry and focuses on helping students get prepared for the real-world by having workshops on interviews, resumes, cover letters and more during meetings. As an added bonus, it looks pretty good on resumes.

For Additional Information

Click here if Professional Land Management sounds like a major you are interested in and you want to learn more.

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School of Energy Resources

Pam Henderson

Manager, Academic Advising

Dept 3012 1000 E University Ave

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: 307-766-6879

Fax: 307-766-6701


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