Take Me Out to the Ballgame

In every downturn, companies position themselves for recovery by cutting exploration and decommissioning rigs, which in turn leaves thousands out of a job.

This holds true in Midland, Texas. Yet, amid one of the worst oil busts in decades, drilling has increased and the Permian Basin is busier than ever. Young professionals are slowly starting to trickle back into the area as job opportunities open up and companies prepare for a comeback.

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In every downturn, companies position themselves for recovery by cutting exploration and decommissioning rigs, which in turn leaves thousands out of a job.

This holds true in Midland, Texas. Yet, amid one of the worst oil busts in decades, drilling has increased and the Permian Basin is busier than ever. Young professionals are slowly starting to trickle back into the area as job opportunities open up and companies prepare for a comeback.

And what better way to get Young Professionals involved in a new community than America’s favorite pastime?

To start off a new year and get connected with other YPs in the industry, the Young Professional Geoscientists (YPGs) in Midland held an event at their local ballpark. The Midland Rockhounds, a minor league baseball team, played the San Antonio Missions on Aug. 31 in the last Thursday game of their regular season. Attendees were treated with a night of baseball and a picnic outing sponsored by the Southwest Section AAPG YP Special Interest Group (SIG). Space was limited to 25 guests — indicative of the slow comeback into the industry; but the YPGs have a positive outlook for 2017 and beyond.

This has become an annual event for the YPGs as a way to start the New Year, and it’s only the beginning. The West Texas Geological Society (WTGS), consisting of members from the petroleum and environmental industries as well as academia, hosted their annual Fall Symposium Sept. 27-29. The YPGs held a happy hour event to encourage students, unemployed graduates and young professionals to seek advice about career paths, build professional networks and to interact with established members of their local geological community. Along with several other conferences scheduled through the year, the group is planning (pending additional sponsorship) field trips to local geology sites, potlucks and holiday parties, as well as activities like a 5K run and volleyball tournament.

With the positive turnout from their recent event, it might just signal that there are brighter times ahead for the Midland oil and gas industry.

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