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5 Highest-Paying Jobs without Degrees {Oil/Gas Industry}
Rig Zone ^ | December 28, 2011 | Rigzone Staff

Posted on 12/28/2011 7:13:10 AM PST by thackney

An industry comprised of workers from all walks of life, O&G personnel vary in skills, experience and pay.

#5 Electrician

Job Description: Specializing in installation, maintenance, and design of electrical systems (in infrastructure, machinery, and related equipment). Category: Trades

Average Annual Salary: $87,374, up 9.6% from 2010 | Standard Range: $50,648 to $133,356

- - - - - - - -

#4 Snubbing

Job Description: Performing a risky form of well-intervention, which is used only when lighter intervention techniques do not work . Category: Oilfield Service

Average Annual Salary: $121,702, up 8.4% from 2010 | Standard Range: $77,424 to $165,979

- - - - - - - -

#3 Captain

Job Description: Commanding the vessel and being responsible for the overall option, management and safety of the unit offshore. Category: Maritime

Average Annual Salary: $122,586, up 6% from 2010 | Standard Range: $77,514 to $167,657

- - - - - - - -

#2 Workover or Completion

Job Description: Operating equipment to increase oil flow from producing wells or to remove stuck pipe, casing, tools, or other obstructions from drilling wells. Category: Production

Average Annual Salary: $133,383, up 11.9% from 2010 | Standard Range: $61,814 to $204,953

- - - - - - - - -

#1 Drilling Consultant

Job Description: Responsible for day-to-day rig operations, including relaying orders from his supervisor in town to the contract tool pusher on-site. Category: Drilling

Average Annual Salary: $224,014, up 9% from 2010 | Standard Range: $143,397 to $304,632


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: energy; highpayingjobs; jobs; naturalgas; oil; oilgas; oilgasindustry; toppayingjobs
Obviously not positions for entry level with no oil/gas experience (except perhaps for an different industry experienced electrician or ship captain)

I believe the top range of the salaries includes significant overtime.

But it does show the potential for those without degrees, willing to work and hang tough for the down times, and work hard when needed. Almost certainly rising up in the industry is going to require some travel to get there.

1 posted on 12/28/2011 7:13:15 AM PST by thackney
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To: thackney

I always thought that one of the highest paying job that did not require a college degree was air traffic controller.


2 posted on 12/28/2011 7:15:20 AM PST by ops33 (Senior Master Sergeant, USAF (Retired))
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To: thackney

My son-in-law got out of the army in July. He has no college and was a fuel handler. He now works as a pipeline controller making around $80,000 a year.


3 posted on 12/28/2011 7:16:31 AM PST by rfreedom4u (Forced diversity causes dissent!)
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Top 5 Paying O&G Jobs with Degrees

http://rigzone.com/news/article.asp?a_id=113149

#5 Safety Officer

Job Description: Developing, implement and oversee safety policies, procedures and programs, including routine audits.
Category: Health, Safety, Environment (HSE)

Average Annual Salary: $79,111, up 10.7% from 2010 | Standard Range: $43,773 to $114,453

- - - - - - - -

#4 Naval Architect

Job Description: Designing ships for shipbuilding companies or design and research firms.
Category: Maritime

Average Annual Salary: $99,151, up 6.2% from 2010 | Standard Range: $53,593 to $144,708

- - - - - - -

#3 Petrophysicist

Job Description: Analyzing reservoirs and helping engineers determine the best areas and procedures for drilling and excavation.
Category: Geoscience

Average Annual Salary: $126,847, up 8.6% from 2010 | Standard Range: 62,933 to $190,761

- - - - - - - - -

#2 Geoscientist

Job Description: Studying the composition, structure, and other physical aspects of the Earth for petroleum.
Category: Geoscience

Average Annual Salary: $123, 143, up 10.5% from 2010 | Standard Range: $57, 470 to $188,817

- - - - - - - - - -

#1 Subsea Engineer

Job Description: Designing, building and installing mechanical systems under the ocean.
Category: Engineering

Average Annual Salary: $139, 511, up 7.3% from 2010 | Standard Range: 82,165 to $196,856


4 posted on 12/28/2011 7:16:34 AM PST by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: ops33

This article is specific to the oil/gas industry in the upstream market.


5 posted on 12/28/2011 7:17:56 AM PST by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: thackney

They forgot stripper in the nearby bars, $2,000 on a good day.


6 posted on 12/28/2011 7:22:24 AM PST by driftdiver (I could eat it raw, but why do that when I have a fire.)
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To: driftdiver

Careers in supporting industries, such the one you listed and the one I work in (consulting engineering) were not included.

They certainly seem to be necessary for the oil and gas to flow, but was not included in this study.


7 posted on 12/28/2011 7:25:26 AM PST by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: thackney

Other jobs that earn well without having a college degree:

1) community organizer
2) pimping
3) drug dealer
4) prostitute
5) actor/actress
6) rock star
7) professional grifter
8) gambler
9) milking the welfare system
10) marrying into money


8 posted on 12/28/2011 7:26:53 AM PST by Le Chien Rouge
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To: thackney

All of these jobs require a higher than average work ethic.

Overtime? Maybe, but not always paid overtime.

Willingness to work until the job is done? Certainly.

Willingness to go where the job is located, regardless of family schedule? Absolutely.

Bonuses to make up for upaid overtime? Yes.

My husband (a degreed, professional engineer with several patents to his name) has been involved in all of these jobs. It prepared him for owning his own business where the rewards are not so great, but the time committment is even more demanding.

Obama is a fool for turning down the opportunity for Americans to seek these jobs.


9 posted on 12/28/2011 7:29:03 AM PST by afraidfortherepublic
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To: thackney
I believe the top range of the salaries includes significant overtime.

Most oilfield workweeks range from 60 to 84 hour weeks (some even more hours).

For Drilling Consultants, they are on location 24/7 for their 'hitch', for some rigs there are two working 12 hours on, 12 hours off (84 hrs/wk), on other rigs, they are on call 24 hrs and work shifts of up to 14 days on/off (a few work the whole well, straight through).

10 posted on 12/28/2011 7:30:45 AM PST by Smokin' Joe (How often God must weep at humans' folly. Stand fast. God knows what He is doing)
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To: thackney

Yep, you’re right, my mistake.


11 posted on 12/28/2011 7:32:44 AM PST by ops33 (Senior Master Sergeant, USAF (Retired))
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To: Le Chien Rouge

LOL.

Also add running Microsoft, Virgin Airlines and Dell Computers.

And jobs where a degree is a sign that you are too smart include being a TV anchor or a regular on The View.


12 posted on 12/28/2011 7:40:28 AM PST by Opinionated Blowhard ("When the people find they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic.")
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To: Smokin' Joe
When I worked overseas construction for oil fields, it 7/12s for 8 weeks then we got 2 weeks off (with pay).

The Alaskan North Slope operating and maintenance positions are similar to O&M in the offshore or other remote land positions. But most every job like this has nothing to do but eat and sleep (and possibly drink). The rec-rooms have gotten nicer over the decades but still rather limited by general public standards. They work 7/12s but are off half the time; 2/3/4/5 weeks on then the same time off. Greater times for start-up or turn-arounds.

It is not for everyone, but it can be rewarding. What I have found at nearly all these place was consistently good food. That was a bit of a stretch living in Yemen; first and last time I ate spam as a pizza topping.

13 posted on 12/28/2011 7:42:46 AM PST by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: ops33

My buddies son got out of the Air Force about three years ago. He was an air traffic controller over in Bagdad for a year. He now works at Miami International. He had a choice of 3 or 4 airports to work at. His starting pay was $75k.

My electrian was a air traffic controller at their main Northeast tracking facility here in Nashua,NH. He got fired by Reagan and had to find a new career. He never forgave Ronnie for that. It is one of those subjects we do not discuss.


14 posted on 12/28/2011 7:45:44 AM PST by woodbutcher1963
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To: thackney

Thack,
Do you know what kind of jobs are the “entry level” jobs?
What kind of work does a novice do to start out with
in order to work their way up into those higher paying slots?
Thanks.


15 posted on 12/28/2011 7:51:43 AM PST by Repeal The 17th (We have met the enemy and he is us.)
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To: thackney

NDI and NDT testing gets at least $30/hr, too

Sheet Metal mechanics in aviation who have over 10 years experience can get as much as $45/hr at Boeing and other locations


16 posted on 12/28/2011 7:52:56 AM PST by RaceBannon (Ron Paul is to the Constitution what Fred Phelps is to the Bible.)
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To: Repeal The 17th

Are you asking about a young worker with a strong back and little experience in any job market?

Or a more experienced worker outside of the oil/gas industry? If so, what existing skill sets and do they have time/money for a bit of training before pursuing work?


17 posted on 12/28/2011 7:57:59 AM PST by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: RaceBannon

The son of friends of ours recently completed about a year of NDI and NDT training. He had his pick of jobs with little history besides fast food. But travel/relocation was required to make decent starting money.


18 posted on 12/28/2011 8:00:34 AM PST by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: thackney

I never got paid for snubbing but it always paid off...


19 posted on 12/28/2011 8:01:36 AM PST by Vendome (Don't take life so seriously, you won't live through it anyway)
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To: Vendome
For the curious:

snubbing

The act of putting drillpipe into the wellbore when the blowout preventers (BOPs) are closed and pressure is contained in the well.

Snubbing is necessary when a kick is taken, since well kill operations should always be conducted with the drillstring on bottom, and not somewhere up the wellbore. If only the annular BOP has been closed, the drillpipe may be slowly and carefully lowered into the wellbore, and the BOP itself will open slightly to permit the larger diameter tool joints to pass through.

If the well has been closed with the use of ram BOPs, the tool joints will not pass by the closed ram element. Hence, while keeping the well closed with either another ram BOP or the annular BOP, the ram must be opened manually, then the pipe lowered until the tool joint is just below the ram, and then closing the ram again. This procedure is repeated whenever a tool joint must pass by a ram BOP.

In snubbing operations, the pressure in the wellbore acting on the cross-sectional area of the tubular can exert sufficient force to overcome the weight of the drillstring, so the string must be pushed (or “snubbed”) back into the wellbore.

In ordinary stripping operations, the pipe falls into the wellbore under its own weight, and no additional downward force or pushing is required.

http://www.glossary.oilfield.slb.com/Display.cfm?Term=snubbing

It doesn't always end well.


20 posted on 12/28/2011 8:09:12 AM PST by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: thackney

LOL

I’m from Oklahoma and sold to O&G for years. Sold to Amerada-Hess, Anadarko, Cherokee, Halliburton, Schlumberger.

Heck, I sold to everyone from Ponca City, to Barlesville and down to Cushing and Drumright and even through N. Texas and all over Louisana.

Primarily telecom services but once I understood fracking and one customer usine LOC from Amway I started selling that too.

I know what all those positions are.


21 posted on 12/28/2011 8:18:20 AM PST by Vendome (Don't take life so seriously, you won't live through it anyway)
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To: Vendome

I recognize that from your previous postings.

I should have swapped “all” for your name in To:

Your joke just gave me an opening to explain.

Cheers


22 posted on 12/28/2011 8:23:13 AM PST by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: Repeal The 17th

My 2 Cents.

Welders and truck drivers are needed in ND & TX right now where they are fracking for oil. You might look into getting training in either of these areas.
Fracking requires lots of water. Water is deliverd to the drilling sites tanker trucks.

FYI, there is a shortage of class 1 truck drivers in the country.


23 posted on 12/28/2011 8:28:44 AM PST by woodbutcher1963
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To: thackney
That was a bit of a stretch living in Yemen; first and last time I ate spam as a pizza topping.

LOL! Last time I did that, the boom had busted, and I made the pizza at home. So far, I have managed to work just in the States (30+ years), but I have seen a lot of country I might not have otherwise.

24 posted on 12/28/2011 8:33:28 AM PST by Smokin' Joe (How often God must weep at humans' folly. Stand fast. God knows what He is doing)
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To: Smokin' Joe
It was a good career path for me. I had just started doing design engineering. It put me in the field, fixing the mistakes of myself and others to get the plant built.

Because it was an undesirable place by most every scale, there wasn't a bunch of people lining up to go without huge pay increases.

I was criticized by co-workers with decades of experience holding out for the pay rate they knew would come, if people just waited.

I felt if I waited until the pay climbed, they wouldn't take a young inexperienced kid like me, but rather people that would deserve that higher rate.

I was on the job site before the first foundations were poured. I stayed until we started up. I could have stayed longer, but too much money in my pocket and a girl waiting was just too much to keep waiting.

But it taught me a lot. It helped me start a career without a sense of arrogance as EVERYONE there knew more about what they were doing than I did. The next youngest guy I found on a crew of 3,500 was 15 years older than me.

Best advice I could give someone wanting to start in anything thing in this field is don't be afraid to work hard and don't be afraid to step out of your comfort zone.

What I have to work on now is remembering to keep working and not let a couple decades give me reason to coast.

25 posted on 12/28/2011 8:47:01 AM PST by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: woodbutcher1963

He got fired by Reagan for not doing his job. He only has himself to blame


26 posted on 12/28/2011 8:48:14 AM PST by South Dakota (shut up and drill)
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To: Repeal The 17th

“Do you know what kind of jobs are the “entry level” jobs?”

The top-side position is called a “tender” who is a member of the “crew” that does the “grunt work” that supports whatever diving operation is going on. Probably $15.00 to $18.00 per hour.

My Son was a “tender” for a number of years and is now a “diver”. Being a “saturation diver” can put you in the 6-figure salary range. http://www.divinglore.com/Saturation%20Diving.html


27 posted on 12/28/2011 8:49:37 AM PST by radioone ("2012 can't come soon enough")
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To: thackney

Computer Programmer: $100+K. No degree required. Many are self taught and some are even high school dropouts. Even the “low” paid programmers make $75K.


28 posted on 12/28/2011 8:56:19 AM PST by CodeToad (Islam needs to be banned in the US and treated as a criminal enterprise.)
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To: thackney
It helped me start a career without a sense of arrogance as EVERYONE there knew more about what they were doing than I did.

The importance of that cannot be overstated. If you know you don't know anything, you can learn. It is the know-it-alls who are virtually impossible to train.

I like the field, the Mrs. and family are used to me being there, and it keeps me on my toes. No two wells are the same.

29 posted on 12/28/2011 9:18:53 AM PST by Smokin' Joe (How often God must weep at humans' folly. Stand fast. God knows what He is doing)
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To: thackney

for later


30 posted on 12/28/2011 9:25:11 AM PST by Mrs. Don-o
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To: thackney

“...Are you asking about...”
-
It was just a question in general about entry level opportunities.

I have a nephew who will be leaving Afghanistan in March and is trying to decide on staying in or getting out.
Uncle Sam trained him in welding and he drives trucks.

I have two brother-in-laws with good work ethic and general factory job experience whose job futures are in doubt.

I have a son who has a year left in college to get his degree in geology.

All of these young men are in their early to mid twenties.
None of these young men have any oil and gas experience.

What type of jobs would be available for them?
Where are the best opportunities for them?
Bakken? Eagle Ford? Marcellus?

Thanks!


31 posted on 12/28/2011 9:49:47 AM PST by Repeal The 17th (We have met the enemy and he is us.)
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To: woodbutcher1963; radioone

Thanks!!


32 posted on 12/28/2011 9:50:42 AM PST by Repeal The 17th (We have met the enemy and he is us.)
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To: Le Chien Rouge

Or, in the case of our president, you could do all of those jobs at once. With the possible exception of #10.


33 posted on 12/28/2011 10:00:47 AM PST by IronJack (=)
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To: Le Chien Rouge

Professional grifter versus amateur grifter? Like my cousin?


34 posted on 12/28/2011 10:08:38 AM PST by job
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To: thackney

LOL

I was just thinking about my post and thought “Freepers(me) are such know it alls”.

Gotta run to work and work on some humility, maybe, probably not...

Happy New Year.


35 posted on 12/28/2011 10:16:53 AM PST by Vendome (Don't take life so seriously, you won't live through it anyway)
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To: Repeal The 17th
Uncle Sam trained him in welding

If he enjoys welding and doesn't mind traveling and being outside, he can make very good money quickly, with a lot of hours. They are in high demand in several locations. He can take that far in the construction trade or turn it into something else as he gains experience. Almost ever site that has oil/gas jobs will have call for welders and helpers.

I have two brother-in-laws with good work ethic and general factory job experience whose job futures are in doubt.

Good job history can open up more areas. They need to decide if they are willing to work outside in all types of weather if they consider rig work. For some, after a while, it just ins't worth it anymore.

For those that want to work inside, my area of the work is design. Mostly in the office, but people with construction experience will have an advantage of knowledge. I work with many designer that have no college degree but received Computer Aided-Drafting classes, often at night, and turned that into dependable 6 figure salary without moving from Houston.

For single guys, doing the travel and taking a job in an armpit location is a good way to quickly gain some job experience and work recognition. I cannot recommend Yemen like I did to get started, but their are opportunities where people don't shoot at you.

I have a son who has a year left in college to get his degree in geology.

If he wants to travel, and picks up some related petroleum geology classes, he should find this a good time for him. You may not get to see him a lot, but there are lots of opportunity. Groups like this: http://www.aapg.org/ can provide better info than I have.

Where are the best opportunities for them?
Bakken? Eagle Ford? Marcellus?

Marcellus is still just getting started. There is opportunity there but I suspect a lot more will be coming, expecially if Utica is as good as they suspect.

Freeper Smokin Joe would respond to a ping about the Bakken, he has been there for some time.

Eagle Ford is becoming decently established but is still seeing a lot of growth. New pipelines are going in and refineries will be expanded. Already they are adding at some just to handle the additional inland oil coming in.

West Texas is really booming as well. More drilling going on there than any area in the country.

The following is a great mapping interactive tool that lets you see what is current and where. Zoom in and take a look:

http://gis.bakerhughesdirect.com/RigCounts/

Working in a refinery or chemical plant or pipeline station or terminal can be related work, especially for doing maintenance work. That can keep you from traveling so much and tends to work more steady hours. The natural gas growth is having several chemical/plastic plant expansion and some new ones being built. That is more gulf coast but some other opportunities exist and Appalachia is going to see some new plants from this.

Rig Zone lists a lot of upstream jobs onshore and offshore.

http://rigzone.com/jobs/

Let me know if I can help with any other info.

36 posted on 12/28/2011 11:15:50 AM PST by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: thackney

Thanks,
You are one of FR’s treasures.


37 posted on 12/28/2011 12:12:43 PM PST by Repeal The 17th (We have met the enemy and he is us.)
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To: thackney
Worked 30 years for the same oilfield service company, retired at 51 because I could.
Two years college, year and a half electronic tech school.
Sometimes long hours, sometimes hard work, good to great pay, great benefits (14 years ago anyway).
Slackers need not apply (They didn't last very long due to hours mostly).

Nuff said.

38 posted on 12/28/2011 12:31:25 PM PST by The Cajun (Palin, Free Republic, Mark Levin, Rush, Hannity......Nuff said.)
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To: Repeal The 17th

I was enlisted in the Navy for six years as a submarine mechanic/welder/operator. Got a job at a power plant 11 years ago starting at $20/hr as a mechanic/operator. (Non-vets started at $18/hr)

I have zero college under my belt, but after two years as a mechanic, I was approached by management to see if I was interested in transferring to the Instrumentation & Controls dept. (Outsiders require a degree to be considered for the job.) I knew virtually nothing about electricity, but I learned quickly and was at top pay after 3 years.

I now make $46/hr and have been working a consistent 55 hrs/wk for the last four years. With that overtime, I haven’t made less than $100k since 2003. All that with no degree, but only military experience and a willingness to work hard.

Don’t know much about the oil/gas industry, but the utility industry may be work looking into. We’re always short on qualified welders. Top pay for welders at my plant is only $1/hr less than an I&C technician. And one other thing, my plant even pays our mechanics to get their state and city welding licenses. Not too many pass it though...


39 posted on 12/28/2011 6:53:39 PM PST by OA5599
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To: OA5599

Thanks!


40 posted on 12/28/2011 8:28:10 PM PST by Repeal The 17th (We have met the enemy and he is us.)
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To: woodbutcher1963

“...He got fired by Reagan...”

Minor point:

He didn’t get fired. He quit.


41 posted on 12/28/2011 8:37:41 PM PST by Nik Naym (It's not my fault... I have compulsive smartass disorder.)
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