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New UW Energy Courses Feature Industry Experts

January 10, 2014

Students in the University of Wyoming’s School of Energy Resources will connect directly with energy experts from around the country in two new courses beginning in the spring 2014 semester.

The first -- a capstone course in the Energy Resources Management and Development program -- requires students to work in teams to design energy asset management and production plans that reflect real-world industry workflow approaches. The second, a seminar for students in the Professional Land Management program, will bring professional landmen and attorneys from the oil and gas industry to campus.

“These industry experts will present topics drawing on their expertise to provide the most contemporary content and perspective available,” says Don Roth, the School of Energy Resources deputy director for academics. “In addition to providing networking opportunities for our students, these interactions will give students a good idea of the competencies, behaviors and aptitudes necessary for competitive success in the workforce.”

UW’s Energy Resources Management and Development program aims to produce graduates ready for careers as energy industry managers who can bridge the complex issues of exploration, development and management of energy resources in Wyoming and globally. There are now 68 students in the undergraduate program, which provides exposure to engineering, geology and economics, along with business, legal and public policy matters, in four specific tracks: fossil fuel-based energy; renewable energy; energy land, air and water management; and professional land management.

Among the experts scheduled to speak to students in the new capstone course are professionals in oil, natural gas and wind project regulation; energy land administration; public relations; financial risk assessment and management; planning, exploration and production; market economics; and reclamation/restoration.

“As our students design their capstone energy development plans, they’ll have the benefit of hearing from experts in all aspects of that process so their work will mirror real-world experience in energy resource management,” Roth says. “Through a combination of rigorous academic training, hands-on scenarios, real-world internships, and connecting students with energy professionals, graduates are prepared for long-term competitive success in the future energy arena.”

The new, nationally accredited Professional Land Management program -- one of just nine in North America accredited by the American Association of Professional Landmen -- is a concentration within the Energy Resource Management and Development major. Nineteen students are enrolled in the program, which aims to produce professional landmen capable of providing sound stewardship of energy and mineral resources. Landmen determine land ownership and availability for mineral leasing; negotiate agreements with landowners for drilling and production rights; draft and administer contracts with the assistance of corporate counsel; coordinate workflow with geologists and engineers; and ensure compliance with government regulations.

The visiting experts this semester in the new Professional Land Management seminar course are scheduled to cover topics including the role of the landman in exploration; the role and duties of both company and independent landmen; surface owner relations and negotiations; ethical standards and practices; oil and gas development on federal lands; and laws governing oil and gas leasing.

All of the presentations by visiting experts in the two new courses will be open to faculty members and students across the UW campus, Roth says.

“We’re very fortunate to be able to attract some great industry resource experts to work with our students,” he says. “These courses highlight the commitment of UW and the School of Energy Resources to new educational solutions to meet workforce demands.”

Anyone interested in learning more about the new courses and SER’s degree programs should contact Roth by calling (307) 766-6816 or emailing

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