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UW’s Rocky Mountain Rendezvous to Draw 325 Students, 14 Companies

September 14, 2015
woman and man talking across a table
John Zupanic, who graduated with a bachelor’s degree in geosciences from UW in 2013, is interviewed by Emily Pherson, an HR generalist with Apache Corporation, at the 2014 Rocky Mountain Rendezvous.

Every September, petroleum industry recruiters and geoscience students from across the United States come to rendezvous in Wyoming.

More than 325 geoscience students from across the nation will meet with representatives from 14 petroleum companies during the 14th annual Rocky Mountain Rendezvous of Geoscience Students and Employers (RMR) job fair. The event is scheduled Sept. 17-20 at the University of Wyoming Conference Center and Hilton Garden Inn.

The RMR is one of five regional job fairs, and is sponsored by the American Association of Geologists (AAPG) and the Society of Exploration Geophysicists (SEG). The UW Department of Geology and Geophysics and the School of Energy Resources (SER) are co-hosts of the event.

The four-day event includes a vendor expo; on-site job interviews; receptions; short courses; student poster presentations that include cash prizes; and a field trip to visit and discuss outcrops, ranging in age from Pre-Cambrian to Oligocene in and around the Bates Hole area in central Wyoming.

Andrew Finley, from Goolsby, Finley and Associates LLC, is the keynote speaker. He will discuss “What Opportunities Do I Have When the Economy Takes a Down Turn?” Friday, Sept. 18, at 6 p.m. in the Marian H. Rochelle Gateway Center Ballroom.

Currently, the petroleum industry is in a downturn, and companies are being forced to lay off geoscientists. The fact that 14 companies will still attend is a testament to their high regard for the RMR and also to the near-retirement age demographics of most companies’ geoscience staff members, says AAPG President Randi Martinsen, a UW emeritus senior lecturer.

“Most petroleum geoscientists I know would rate their profession No. 1, as they get to explore the wonder of our dynamic earth on a daily basis -- and the pay isn’t too bad either,” Martinsen says.

In 2013, CNN rated the occupation of a petroleum geoscientist as the No. 6 best job in America (

However, Martinsen cautions job offers will be few and competition for those few jobs will be high. Despite the tougher economy, the rewards gained by obtaining one of those few jobs are many, she adds.

Participating companies include Anadarko, Apache Corp., Chesapeake Energy, Chevron, Columbine Logging, Devon Energy, Exxon Mobil, Hess, Marathon Oil, Pioneer Natural Resources, Shell and the Wyoming Board of Professional Geologists.

The job fair was developed to allow geoscience students from other colleges and universities -- who had no means to market themselves to recruiters -- an opportunity to do so, Martinsen says. In addition, there are many smaller companies that do not have the recruiting budget of their larger counterparts. Thus, such companies can’t visit every college or university they would like for recruitment purposes.

Geoscience students at UW typically major in petroleum engineering, geoanalytics, geochemistry, geohydrology and geophysics.

“It is exciting and rewarding to be part of a team of UW staff and students who work all year long to make this event happen,” Martinsen says. “Today’s explorers are geoscientists, and the RMR is an important venue for matching up students with their dream job.”

For more information about the RMR, go to For a schedule, click on “Agenda.”

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