Petroleum engineers specialize in the withdrawal, storage and transportation of fossil fuels. They also take part in explorations, oversee the efficient extraction of natural resources, and head the design and construction of drilling sites around the globe. Petroleum engineers rely on sophisticated seismic technology, which uses sound waves to detect potential natural resources that lie below the earth's surface. Degrees in petroleum engineering are offered at the bachelor's, master's and doctorate levels.

University of Texas Austin

Based at the University of Texas at Austin, the Cockrell School of Engineering was ranked by "U.S. News & World Report" 9th overall in undergraduate education this year and 2nd in petroleum engineering programs in 2003. The engineering program is offered at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Specialized undergraduate areas of study in petroleum engineering comprise geosystems engineering, and hydrogeology. The engineering department encourages students to engage in research projects at the undergraduate level. Depending on the quality of their research, students are eligible to receive scholarships and special programs. The five main interdisciplinary initiatives in engineering are sustainable energy, engineering human health care, manufacturing and design innovation, sustainable and secure infrastructure, and space and earth engineering.

University of Texas Austin Cockrell School of Engineering 1 University Station C2200 Austin TX 78712 512-475-7440

Stanford University

The students and faculty at Stanford University's Department of Energy Resources Engineering have received numerous awards and recognitions from various institutions, such as the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Geological Society of America. Prospective students can enroll in the master of sciences or doctoral programs in energy resources engineering. Incoming students should have a strong background in physical science, engineering and mathematics. Course offerings include the basics of petroleum engineering, petroleum geology, reservoir engineering and well testing. Students are expected to enroll in at least 15 units per quarter.

Stanford University 450 Serra Mall Stanford, CA 94305 650-723-2300

Colorado School of Mines

Colorado School of Mines is world-renowned for its engineering program and was rated among the best graduate programs by "U.S. News & World Report" in 2010. Ninety-six percent of the program's graduates are guaranteed employment in the industry or at government institutions. The engineering department specializes in the discovery and recovery of the natural resources, and seeks innovative approaches that help to improve the preservation and sustainability of the earth's resources. Areas of specialization within the field of geoscience are environmental science and engineering, hydrology, geophysics, and petroleum reservoir systems.

Colorado School of Mines 1500 Illinois St. Golden, CO 80401 303-273-3000