Petroleum Engineering

Earn your petroleum engineering degree in the heart of the nation’s energy frontier.

The petroleum engineering program at UAF offers research opportunities you won’t find anywhere else in the world, focusing on the unique challenges and resource development aspects of the Arctic. Our master’s degree also features 18 specialized graduate courses in petroleum engineering, exploring topics from flow assurance, to geology, to experimental and data analytics methods.

You can work at your own pace, earning your petroleum engineering master’s degree as a full- or part-time student. For working oil industry professionals in Anchorage, we also offer the opportunity to take classes remotely via video conferencing with our Troth Yeddha' campus.  

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Why Earn Your Petroleum Engineering Degree at UAF?

Students from all over the world come to UAF to study petroleum engineering, and join one of the most modern and challenging degree programs of its kind in the nation. We have a long and proven track record of preparing leaders in the industry, and offer incredible opportunities for graduate-level research and experiential learning.

Gain specialized skills for petroleum engineering in the Arctic

  • With its cold climate, permafrost and remote location, the Arctic presents unique challenges for petroleum engineers. Alaska is also home to the largest oil field in North America, and offers study in resource development that can’t be matched. For our students, this means one-of-a-kind opportunities, and our graduates are highly sought after by employers throughout the region.

Engage in cutting-edge research and experiential learning

  • • Funded research projects at UAF focus on the development of oil and gas resources in Alaska, including enhanced oil recovery (EOR) and other well drilling and completion projects that involve dealing with permafrost. These projects offer valuable opportunities to interface with industry professionals, and nearly all our petroleum engineering master’s students publish research. We also provide state-of-the-art lab facilities in the areas of drilling, reservoir and production, with software and equipment used by industry professionals.

Take specialized petroleum engineering master’s degree courses

  • We offer 18 specialized graduate courses in petroleum engineering that offer unique opportunities to learn some of the latest industry trends. For example, our data analytics focused Experimental Methods In Petroleum Engineering course is popular with many students. Or, the Flow Assurance course, which appeals to any engineer who is interested in fluid mechanics.

Work one-on-one with award-winning faculty

  • Our faculty include winners of the SPE Western Region Distinguished Achievement Award for petroleum engineering faculty. All are active in research and are published authors in the field of petroleum engineering. Your professors will know you by name and are here to answer your questions and help you succeed.



What Can You Do With a Petroleum Engineering Degree?

Alaska has the highest concentration of jobs for petroleum engineers in the United States, and almost all of our students find employment in their field after graduation. Oil and gas companies regularly recruit alumni of our program, and a number of our graduates have gone on to achieve managerial and executive level positions in the oil industry. 


Jobs for petroleum engineering program graduates

Jobs in petroleum engineering typically fall into the service sector (with companies such as Schlumberger, Baker Hughes and Halliburton) or with operating companies such as BP, ConocoPhillips and ExxonMobil. Petroleum engineer jobs are typically in the areas of drilling, reservoir or production.


Petroleum engineering salaries

Petroleum engineering has historically been one of the highest paid jobs in engineering, although salaries are affected by the rise and fall of oil prices. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, petroleum engineers in Alaska earn an average of $150,390 per year. As of 2020, the average petroleum engineer salary nationally is $137,330.



Get Started on Your Petroleum Engineering Program

Take the next step toward earning your petroleum engineering degree. We have the resources to help you get started.