over 20,000 persons on six continents, Norman J. Hyne is a rock
star — a star in the geology sense.
He is the kind of rock star that stands before audiences
and uses the talents of a stand-up comic, a friendly expert and
the parent-like ability to take the technical and make the world
of petroleum geology, exploration and production understandable,
interesting and, yes, even exciting.
More often than not, his over 500 petroleum geology
teaching performances before non-geologists end in a standing ovation.
In real life, Hyne is an honored professor at the
University of Tulsa, having been voted "best professor" several
times by the students. He also is a certified petroleum geologist
and president of NJH Energy, a company that owns and manages oil
and gas wells.
Hyne got his rock star status through the short course
"Basic Petroleum Geology for the Non-Geologist," the two- and three-day
seminars he has taught since 1979, with 97 percent "excellent" course
ratings and never an unsatisfactory review.
AAPG has joined with TU as a co-sponsor for the course,
including exclusive in-house offerings, and hopes to help expose
an even wider audience to the joys of petroleum geology.
An 'Infectious Love of Geology'
It is the verve and enthusiasm he brings to the class
that has brought comments such as, "Almost makes me want to be a
geologist" — from a landman, no less.
He doesn't have students. He has fans.
The course's survival through several oil busts while
other petroleum short courses died is credited to the broad base
of potential students and the quality of the course.
Billed as a great course for anyone who needs an
overview of the petroleum industry, the course introduces fundamentals
and language of petroleum exploration, drilling and production.
The fans receive a rock and mineral kit, extensive lecture notes,
wall charts and glossary, and get hands-on identification instruction.
The course covers:
- The basic processes in the formation of
rocks and petroleum.
- The occurrence, distribution and nature
of oil and gas.
- The use of geology and seismic in petroleum
- How to drill and complete a well.
- How to qualitatively interpret well logs.
- How to produce petroleum and calculate
The course has over 1,100 slides and hands-on examples
— such as a drill bit and different crude oils — and Hyne constantly
tinkers with the content to meet the expectations of the future
fans. But the core is always the geology of petroleum exploration.
The course was originally designed for geological
and geophysical technicians. But as word about the course grew,
attendees have included CEOs, lawyers, secretaries, bankers, engineers,
investors, investment brokers, geotechs, accountants, journalists
and just about every other flavor of non-geologist who touch the
world of a petroleum geologist — even wives, husbands and EXPLORER
reporters. Also, geologists who are being retrained for oil and
gas exploration have taken the course. It is accredited for accountants
What makes the class work is Hyne's infectious love
of geology and the petroleum industry.
He has received degrees from Pomona College, Florida
State (he once wanted to be an oceanographer) and the University
of Southern California. He has published or edited nine books and
numerous research papers on petroleum reservoirs and exploration,
and also teaches advanced geological exploration courses.