TU Opens Energy Management Center, Hires Director

Monday, October 23, 2006

Published on 10/23/06

The University of Tulsa College of Business Administration is celebrating the opening of a new program and the arrival of an energy-industry leader to guide it.

The Energy Management Center will begin accepting students in fall 2007.

Leading it is Ted K. Jacobs, a landman who spent 20 years in the energy industry working for Getty Oil, TXO Production, Tidemark Exploration and ONEOK. Most recently, Jacobs led a turnaround of a similar program at the University of Oklahoma.

“He brings credibility,” said Gale Sullenberger, dean of the College of Business Administration. “The industry knows him and the commodity he has been producing. That will be a tremendous asset for our students.”

Jacob’s first teaching experience was as director of Energy Management at OU – a program he rescued from the brink of extinction. He lifted the program back to national prominence after it fell from 800 students in the early ’80s to only four because of the 1980s oil slump.

Now, he’s bringing that nine years of experience at OU to The University of Tulsa.

“We’re right in the center of the energy industry,” he said. “This is a chance for TU to become the energy capital of the world, just as the City of Tulsa has considered itself the oil capital of the world.”

The program will combine the highly respected petroleum engineering, geology, law, risk management and energy-based continuing education programs already at TU with energy trading expertise, risk management and emerging studies, such as alternative energy.
Jacobs has traveled to major energy companies to find out what kinds of graduates they need and what they think is missing from recent hires.

What he found out is that students need more knowledge of finance and economics. They also need a foundation in energy commodities trading because if upstream oil drilling is all that students understand at graduation, they may be without jobs if the price of oil falls.

“Energy companies are not called oil and gas companies anymore, not just petroleum,” Jacobs said. “It’s about all sources of energy. Students will graduate from TU’s Energy Management program with a very well-rounded understanding of the industry.”

Highlights of the Energy Management Center:
• One of only five such university programs in the country, and Jacobs promises that TU’s soon will be the premier program.

• Jacobs began working at TU on Sept. 1. He is securing industry partnerships and working with the TU faculty to develop the curriculum.

• Students will be eligible for energy-related internships starting next summer.

• First students will be welcomed in the fall, with an expected enrollment of 80 to 100 students and 20 to 30 graduates per year.

• Program will rely heavily on the energy industry for scholarship support.

• Midstream energy commodities trading will become an integral part of the new program instead of focusing primarily on upstream development.

• Interdisciplinary courses will incorporate energy-related courses from business, petroleum engineering, geology and law into the Energy Management curriculum.

• Jacobs maintains constant contact with the industry so that he can update the curriculum as needs in the energy industry change.