I want your story. Read on and I will tell you why.
Many of you may have recently watched all or partof Ken Burns’ new 15-hour documentary on PBS about World War II (The War). The format of this excellent program was similar to his previous projects including The Civil War, Baseball, and Lewis & Clark. What make these programs so compelling are the personal stories and first-person accounts of both the famous and the front-line individuals who played large or small parts in the subject covered. It is the stories of the ordinary men and women that have the most effect in making the events real to the viewer.
In my day job, I am fortunate to meet many small E&P company owners and engineers as we review projects. Most of these folks have been in our business for many years and one of the first things we learn is “how they got here.” The myriad combinations of home towns, educations, companies, locations, jobs, projects, and so forth are always different and always interesting. There are no two stories alike.
At the annual GCS Awards Banquet held in the spring, the Legion of Honor recipients are introduced while short synopses of their careers are played on a large overhead screen. The Legion of Honor is for individuals with 50 years of SPE membership—that’s right, 50. Even with very little space, the short bios and quotes hint at colorful stories one would like to hear. Also at the Awards Banquet, short bios of the young scholarship winners are also displayed; stories that are just beginning.
History’s most famous teachers of religious faith chose parables — stories — to convey timeless messages. Case study sessions and presentations are usually the best attended at any technical conference. Real-life engineering stories.
Our GCS Petroleum Engineering Recruiting Fairs on November 5–9 at six area high schools are always well-received by students, parents, teachers, and counselors. These events are very effective at putting forth the message that our profession is fun, challenging, and rewarding in many more ways than just monetarily. What makes them effective? The personal stories presented by recent graduates and industry leaders (a nice way of saying not-so-recent graduates).
We all have our own personal education and career stories to share. I believe a collection of these stories can be a very effective ambassadorship tool. Having this collection to share with persons young or old, greatly or partly interested in our industry or profession, will help make it real, convey positive attributes, and help offset the negative stereotypes portrayed in the media. A bonus benefit will be for each of us to learn more about our peers in this business. The journey makes us one.
Please send your story to me firstname.lastname@example.org in any format, long or short, funny or serious. I would like to hear from the young and not-so-young. In general, I am looking for how you decided on your education path, how you decided on your profession/industry, the different companies/jobs you’ve had along the way, but especially what is most meaningful to you about your chosen vocation. You will be contacted for your permission before any of your story is used in any manner. That part of this story is still to be determined; however, at a minimum I anticipate access to the collection under the Articles section on the GCS web site home page www.spegcs.org.
Check it out, there may be a few stories already there! Thanks in advance for sharing.