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Posted: 10/15/2008 6:40:31 AM EST
I'm 2 years into my petroleum engineering courseload, and have discovered that there is no way I can handle all this math and physics. I'm just not capable.

Basically my only other option is Construction management. What can I do with that? Answers that involve the oil industry would be a plus.

And no, I'm not going to drop out and work at Mcdonalds.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 6:43:04 AM EST
Have you considered bucking up and finishing the degree you started?
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 6:46:57 AM EST
No idea. But you can always get alternative certification and teach. But that's with any degree.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 6:47:05 AM EST
Did you read my post? I said I'm not capable. It just ain't gonna happen.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 6:47:40 AM EST
Manage construction perhaps
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 6:48:05 AM EST
manage construction sites?

earn 70k +
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 6:49:00 AM EST

Originally Posted By jimfinn:
Did you read my post? I said I'm not capable. It just ain't gonna happen.


With a defeatist attitude like that, I would say McDonalds is perfect for you.

Link Posted: 10/15/2008 6:49:05 AM EST
Project Manager for Construction Company that builds off shore oil rigs, drilling rigs, pipelines?
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 6:50:50 AM EST

Originally Posted By thelastgunslinger:
Have you considered bucking up and finishing the degree you started?


I would give this serious thought. Two more years of hell, but some serious bank there after. I was at a meeting last fall where one lady was saying that there are petroleum and natural gas engineers that are making something like $75k/yr as an intern.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 6:55:15 AM EST

Originally Posted By ZitiForBreakfast:

Originally Posted By jimfinn:
Did you read my post? I said I'm not capable. It just ain't gonna happen.


With a defeatist attitude like that, I would say McDonalds is perfect for you.



maybe he's just a realist...defeatist has nothing to do with it


mans got to know his limitations...sounds like the OP knows his
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:01:08 AM EST
I was in a similar situation with Aerospace Engineering. I decided to drop Engineering entirely after I realized I just wasn't that great at Calc/Physics.

I was only 1.5 in.. decided to cut my losses and pursue a degree I found more interesting and fun rather than try for something I could barely comprehend. Now I'm a Junior and love my classes and have an interesting career choice ahead of me because of this.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:02:30 AM EST

Originally Posted By ZitiForBreakfast:

Originally Posted By jimfinn:
Did you read my post? I said I'm not capable. It just ain't gonna happen.


With a defeatist attitude like that, I would say McDonalds is perfect for you.



Knowing your limits is vastly more intelligent than getting low C or high D grades in subjects you will most likely need to use in your professional field.

I'm sure you wanted to be more than an armchair commentator on people's lives here on ARFcom, but look where your life has led you...

Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:14:00 AM EST
I work at a construction management/general contracting company. CM degrees can open the door to project estimating, project supervision, project engineering, and/or project management among other things.

"Green" building is big right now and will be for long into the future. This isn't so much due to "climate change" panic as it is a matter of simple economics. "Green" buildings are simply less costly all around; to build, operate, and maintain. You should make the focus of your education CM and green technology if you can.

Seriously though, if you like what you're learning now you should stick to it. Don't stress yourself out and quit because you perceive the workload as being too high. If you genuinely dislike the degree you're pursuing and can't stomach the thought of doing anything related to your degree for the rest of your life, by all means change it.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:18:10 AM EST
Construction Management.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:21:53 AM EST
It depends on your skill set. No one has asked to see mine in 15 years.

Pmc
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:22:00 AM EST
You could switch over to 'Process Management' or 'Instrumentation' and still have a good career in the oil industry...
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:23:34 AM EST
My wife works as an AdMin assistant with her Construction Management degree.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:25:37 AM EST
<-mining engineer


So take a smaller class load. You only need 12 credits to be a full time student.


You will regret not getting your petroleum engineering degree, trust me. I almost dropped out and now I look back and realize that would have been a terrible decision.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:27:16 AM EST

Originally Posted By jimfinn:
Did you read my post? I said I'm not capable. It just ain't gonna happen.


Sounds like you need to sack up and take care of business.

You will NOT get far with that attitude.

Find your goal, then go and take it.

Its that simple.

Good Luck.

For the record: My cousin is a construction manager, he makes around 60k, if not more.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:28:14 AM EST
I have a construction management degree. I moved over from Arch Engineering because I couldn't stand the drawing classes. I am currently in Canton, OH running the project controls team for marathon Oil building a Ultra Low Sulfer Desiel unit that we are adding to an existing refinery.

Here are some of your options:

Assistant Project Management - usually on site, client relations, contract and subcontract questions, RFI, Change orders and document control.

Estimating - usually home office, will bid quantities off plans, go to the site prior to bidding for field surveys and meeting with the client.

Project Controls - can be home office or field, there is cost and schedule that you can be doind one or the other or both depending on the project size. On schedule, you build update and report on the project schedule. On cost you track costs and forecast the costs and profit at the end of the job and ensure subs are staying with their contractual obligations (I guess you can tell which area I am in )

Project management - (about 10 yrs in the industry) client relations, contract and subcontract negotiations

Most of these paths lead to project manager if you want.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:28:19 AM EST
Start out as a project engineer at a large general contracting firm. Work your way up.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:29:17 AM EST

Originally Posted By skygod:

Originally Posted By jimfinn:
Did you read my post? I said I'm not capable. It just ain't gonna happen.


Sounds like you need to sack up and take care of business.

You will NOT get far with that attitude.

Find your goal, then go and take it.

Its that simple.

Good Luck.

For the record: My cousin is a construction manager, he makes around 60k, if not more.


He is just a 'realist' according to ARFCOM.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:32:07 AM EST
I also built houses as a super for the last five years and made $50-65k before the market turn down. I now make $56k base, $15-20K bonus and $38 in perdiem a year for being on site.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:40:19 AM EST

Originally Posted By jimfinn:
I'm 2 years into my petroleum engineering courseload, and have discovered that there is no way I can handle all this math and physics. I'm just not capable.

Basically my only other option is Construction management. What can I do with that? Answers that involve the oil industry would be a plus.

And no, I'm not going to drop out and work at Mcdonalds.


Wait, you are 2 years in? If you can make it thru the Calc-specific and physics-specific courses, you DO have the "ability" to finish the degree, IMO...if you were thinking this after the first year, than I would have thought you may be right, but you should be into actual engineering classes now... (I am not a petro engineer, for full disclosure, it may be completely off from what I am thinking...so judge $.02 appropriately )
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:43:05 AM EST

Originally Posted By ZitiForBreakfast:

Originally Posted By jimfinn:
Did you read my post? I said I'm not capable. It just ain't gonna happen.


With a defeatist attitude like that, I would say McDonalds is perfect for you.




Nice buddy...

I bet you thought you'd be President someday instead of working at Walmart, posting stupid crap like this.


OP, I would talk to some Construction GM's, and see if they can get you connected.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 7:54:32 AM EST
Get a job as a super and put up with an endless stream of whining crybabys, most of whom have to have their hands held all the way through the job.

It can pay well.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 8:26:10 AM EST

Originally Posted By Windustsearch:
Get a job as a super and put up with an endless stream of whining crybabys, most of whom have to have their hands held all the way through the job.

It can pay well.


That sounds about right. Either superintendent or project manager.

Deal with engineers that were too lazy to measure stuff, clients who want their [insert derogatory comment here] hands held, accounting people who don't want you to spend money, construction workers who are a whole mix of screwy, and federal, state, and local agencies.

You can make good money but be prepared to travel (depending on the firm you are hired at).

It's more or less what I do and I'm on the road about eight months out of the year. Money is decent, you get to see a lot of places, and meet new and interesting folks everyday. However it's hard to have a decent family relationship being gone so much.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 8:33:30 AM EST

Originally Posted By jimfinn:
I'm 2 years into my petroleum engineering courseload, and have discovered that there is no way I can handle all this math and physics. I'm just not capable.

Basically my only other option is Construction management. What can I do with that? Answers that involve the oil industry would be a plus.

And no, I'm not going to drop out and work at Mcdonalds.


Would it be possible for you to take one or two of those courses in summer school?
It would give you a little bit of extra time to focus on those classes and ease up the workload for the rest of the year some.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 8:55:11 AM EST
Oh you are in the pre-business side of engineering then eh?

Thats what we called drop outs from engineering at my school.

Frankly, I REALLY struggled thru the physics and the math to get my Civil Engineering Degree.

Once I got past those weedout classes, I never really used them again. (Well you can count physics use is statics and dynamics..somewhat I guess).

Different story if you are going into a Mechanical or Electrical Engineering degree I imagine but not Civil.

Go that route, better than construction management and ALL state DOT's need engineers these days. Retirements are killing the departments like crazy.

Link Posted: 10/15/2008 8:59:49 AM EST

Originally Posted By AllAmerican2000:
I have a construction management degree. I moved over from Arch Engineering because I couldn't stand the drawing classes. I am currently in Canton, OH running the project controls team for marathon Oil building a Ultra Low Sulfer Desiel unit that we are adding to an existing refinery.

Here are some of your options:

Assistant Project Management - usually on site, client relations, contract and subcontract questions, RFI, Change orders and document control.

Estimating - usually home office, will bid quantities off plans, go to the site prior to bidding for field surveys and meeting with the client.

Project Controls - can be home office or field, there is cost and schedule that you can be doind one or the other or both depending on the project size. On schedule, you build update and report on the project schedule. On cost you track costs and forecast the costs and profit at the end of the job and ensure subs are staying with their contractual obligations (I guess you can tell which area I am in )

Project management - (about 10 yrs in the industry) client relations, contract and subcontract negotiations

Most of these paths lead to project manager if you want.
This guy is exactly correct, and he's a Wildcat! Construction management is a great field, and the opportunities are literally endless. Keep in touch with your Petro friends, though. They're going to be your clients one day.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 9:53:43 AM EST

I bet you thought you'd be President someday instead of working at Walmart, posting stupid crap like this.


That is funny.

I appreciate our fellow Americans backing down to challenges and allowing others to prosper in thier place.

It was meant to motivate.

Next time I will give hugs and say "Its ok, there there..."

Link Posted: 10/15/2008 10:22:58 AM EST

Originally Posted By ZitiForBreakfast:

I bet you thought you'd be President someday instead of working at Walmart, posting stupid crap like this.


That is funny.

I appreciate our fellow Americans backing down to challenges and allowing others to prosper in thier place.

It was meant to motivate.

Next time I will give hugs and say "Its ok, there there..."



Hopefully you realize the bitter taste of sarcastic humor in my post. I have no degree worth mentioning (Masters in English) and own/operate a $2.5M dollar business with 11 employees...
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 10:27:10 AM EST
I have a Construction Management degree, I graduated May 2007, and I am working for a General Contractor as an assistant project manger. If you like construction, it's a good job. The pay is also pretty good for just out of college.

When I graduated, there was a strong demand for people with Construction Management degrees. That may have changed some with the credit problem and slowdowns.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 10:31:57 AM EST

Originally Posted By QuicksilverJPR:

Originally Posted By ZitiForBreakfast:

I bet you thought you'd be President someday instead of working at Walmart, posting stupid crap like this.


That is funny.

I appreciate our fellow Americans backing down to challenges and allowing others to prosper in thier place.

It was meant to motivate.

Next time I will give hugs and say "Its ok, there there..."



Hopefully you realize the bitter taste of sarcastic humor in my post. I have no degree worth mentioning (Masters in English) and own/operate a $2.5M dollar business with 11 employees...


Missed it all.

Link Posted: 10/15/2008 10:32:31 AM EST
petroleum engineering sounds like a good field.

I have an uncle with a similar degree from Michigan State. He makes tons of money and spends lots of time overseas.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 10:36:15 AM EST
There is nothing wrong with realizing you've made a mistake.

Some people just can't handle certain subjects, like higher-level math. That doesn't make the OP a "quitter" or "loser". I have more respect for someone who can admit that they made a mistake, as opposed to someone who'll slug their way through courses they aren't really learning anything from so they can wind up with a job they aren't really qualified for and screwing things up for a lot of other people.
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 10:36:25 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/15/2008 10:38:10 AM EST by Nomos]
Remember that sophomore level classes (200 level) tend to be classes designed to drop people out of the programs. In my experience those classes carried the highest workload/ credit hour and dealt with some of the most abstract and difficult concepts. Sophomores tend to carry a high number of required classes for their program as well as that is the "recommended" course of study. If you are on track to pass the classes you are currently in I would continue on in that degree program. If you are failing all or most of your classes cut your losses and run.

You may also consider taking some of your electives now and slowing down on the required classes. What matter is you get the classes not when you take them.

But I will tell you this, only you know if you are applying yourself or not. Take a really good look in the mirror and ask yourself if you are doing all you can to pass your classes. If you are starting your party on Thursday and ending it sometime on Monday maybe you should reevaluate your priorities.

Also, Find a tutor for the math, talk with your TA or Prof. Go to the help sessions. Find an upperclassman who is willing to help you. If you haven't explored these options you are giving up too early. I am not an engineer, but I had housemates who were and they struggled through it every day.

Good Luck
Link Posted: 10/15/2008 10:37:01 AM EST
I hear you with difficulty in math and physics...I was the same way. To me, when you're dealing more with letters and random symbols, it's not math anymore. However, don't give up something that you want. Math is funny...if you find the right teacher or tutor who can explain concepts that click for you, it will fall into place. Good luck.

Blake
Link Posted: 10/16/2008 7:07:32 AM EST

Originally Posted By Blake:
I hear you with difficulty in math and physics...I was the same way. To me, when you're dealing more with letters and random symbols, it's not math anymore. However, don't give up something that you want. Math is funny...if you find the right teacher or tutor who can explain concepts that click for you, it will fall into place. Good luck.

Blake


Math is useless to me unless it involves certain aspects of science, like physics or astronomy...stuff like that. I "like" that kind of math (basically math I can see work in the real world). Just throwing abstract equations out there for the purpose of putting them down on paper =
Link Posted: 10/16/2008 7:11:41 AM EST
Link Posted: 10/16/2008 7:13:13 AM EST
Do you want fries with that?
Link Posted: 10/16/2008 8:08:17 AM EST
My advice is to get the engineering degree. During your math semesters, take a really light course load. Get a tutor. Go part time. Whatever you've got to do.

Once you finish the math, you'll never have to do it again. I've never used calculus (or differential equations) since I took the final. I even took a class specifically on solving ODE's via approximations and spreadsheets. In my time as a structural engineer, I've never used anything more complex than the occasional cubic equation. In fact, if you were working for me and you pulled out the calculus textbook, I'd take it away and hand you the design code.

Once you get the degree, immediately start on your path to professional licensure. Make "working under the supervision of a professional engineer" your first criteria for a job. Credit and finances come and go, real estate explodes and deflates, construction booms and busts, but anything that gets done needs a PE to put the cherry on top. Building departments are demanding that everything be signed and sealed: as an engineer, your job is legislated into existence. If you have a PE, you can pretty much pick your working conditions, location and area of practice.

Just my Professional Opinion.

Link Posted: 10/17/2008 4:11:00 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/17/2008 4:11:44 AM EST by AllAmerican2000]

Originally Posted By w12x40:
My advice is to get the engineering degree. During your math semesters, take a really light course load. Get a tutor. Go part time. Whatever you've got to do.

Once you finish the math, you'll never have to do it again. I've never used calculus (or differential equations) since I took the final. I even took a class specifically on solving ODE's via approximations and spreadsheets. In my time as a structural engineer, I've never used anything more complex than the occasional cubic equation. In fact, if you were working for me and you pulled out the calculus textbook, I'd take it away and hand you the design code.

Once you get the degree, immediately start on your path to professional licensure. Make "working under the supervision of a professional engineer" your first criteria for a job. Credit and finances come and go, real estate explodes and deflates, construction booms and busts, but anything that gets done needs a PE to put the cherry on top. Building departments are demanding that everything be signed and sealed: as an engineer, your job is legislated into existence. If you have a PE, you can pretty much pick your working conditions, location and area of practice.

Just my Professional Opinion.



AMEN!!!

It is sad the number of items that are required to be signed off and stamped by an engineer.

Good job security

Link Posted: 10/17/2008 4:17:04 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/17/2008 4:17:18 AM EST by NoVaGator]
I don't know what school you go to, but a BCN degree from Florida is a meal ticket. It's like 1/3 civil, 1/3 arch, and 1/3 business. It produces graduates that are actually useful to construction companies in a variety of ways.
Link Posted: 10/17/2008 4:54:54 AM EST

Originally Posted By AllAmerican2000:

Originally Posted By w12x40:
My advice is to get the engineering degree. During your math semesters, take a really light course load. Get a tutor. Go part time. Whatever you've got to do.

Once you finish the math, you'll never have to do it again. I've never used calculus (or differential equations) since I took the final. I even took a class specifically on solving ODE's via approximations and spreadsheets. In my time as a structural engineer, I've never used anything more complex than the occasional cubic equation. In fact, if you were working for me and you pulled out the calculus textbook, I'd take it away and hand you the design code.

Once you get the degree, immediately start on your path to professional licensure. Make "working under the supervision of a professional engineer" your first criteria for a job. Credit and finances come and go, real estate explodes and deflates, construction booms and busts, but anything that gets done needs a PE to put the cherry on top. Building departments are demanding that everything be signed and sealed: as an engineer, your job is legislated into existence. If you have a PE, you can pretty much pick your working conditions, location and area of practice.

Just my Professional Opinion.



AMEN!!!

It is sad the number of items that are required to be signed off and stamped by an engineer.

Good job security



Well now you have had 3 of us ENGINEERS tell you the same thing. Slog thru those damn classes as best and possible and pursue the Engineering degree. Unless you like quitting.
Link Posted: 10/17/2008 5:00:14 AM EST
You could work for a petrolium (or other) contractor doing anything the following:

job estimating
job scheduling
managing construction projects, personel, subs, etc.
doing material take offs and ordering materials
arranging deliveries
reading a lot of plans and construction documents!
doing change orders
negotiating
possibly specifying material or design

maybe more depending how the company you work for is set up
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