Petroleum Engineering Doctoral Program Ranked 4th by US News

Thursday, April 30, 2009

The Petroleum Engineering Doctoral Program at the University of Tulsa is Ranked 4th by US News and World Reports

The University of Tulsa’s petroleum engineering graduate program again has been recognized as one of the top programs of its kind in the nation, according to U.S. News and World Report’s 2009 Best Graduate Schools.

The petroleum engineering program at TU was ranked No. 4 nationally among graduate schools in that specialty. TU is the only Oklahoma college or university ranked in the top four in any discipline or specialty area listed within the publication, which hit newsstands today.

“TU has a well-earned, national reputation for providing opportunities for students and faculty to engage with industry to solve real-world problems,” said TU President Steadman Upham. “Our petroleum engineering program, in particular, has been a national model for developing partnerships between academia and industry to enrich the student learning experience.”

In addition to the ranking of the petroleum engineering program, TU doctoral student Jesse French was profiled in the magazine. French, who is studying sustainable energy systems in the mechanical engineering department, was prominently featured in a section about graduate students balancing their studies with other obligations, including family and finances. French is a 35-year-old father of three who came to TU after a stint in the U.S. Army as a helicopter pilot. He earned his master’s degree in mechanical engineering from TU in 2007 and is now pursuing his doctorate.

For its rankings of graduate programs, U.S. News asked engineering school deans nationwide to identify the 10 schools with the best graduate programs in 10 areas of specialization.

Steven J. Bellovich, dean of the College of Engineering and Natural Science at TU, said the recognition is a testament not only to the quality of the education students receive at TU, but also to the successes they enjoy after graduating.

“TU is known here and abroad for its top faculty, quality students and modern research and teaching facilities,” Bellovich said. “The ranking affirms the excellent national and international reputation of our program, which brings students and faculty from around the globe here to Tulsa.”

TU’s petroleum engineering program has enrolled 246 undergraduate and 53 graduate students this year. The program strongly recruits internationally with 29 countries represented by students and faculty within the graduate and undergraduate programs.

Mohan Kelkar, the Williams Endowed Chair in Petroleum Engineering at TU, noted that a particular strength of the program is student access to facilities, including TU’s North Campus. The petroleum research facilities at North Campus, located at 2540 E. Marshall, feature field-scale industry equipment allowing students to perform experiments and practice new technologies in an accurate testing environment.

The TU petroleum engineering department, established in 1928, offers bachelor of science, master of engineering, master of science and doctoral degrees. The department’s seven research consortia are in partnership with oil and gas companies from all over the world. The first consortium, TU Drilling Research Projects, was founded in 1967.