New petroleum dep’t is small part of plans for UG’s development – Vice-Chancellor

Vice-Chancellor Ivelaw Griffith

Although the University of Guyana (UG) has started preparing to cater to nurturing skills for the oil and gas sector with its planned opening of a Department of Petroleum and Geological Engineering next January, Vice-Chancellor Ivelaw Griffith says it is only a small part of the comprehensive plans he has for the institution.

“The business of oil and gas is not limited to technology. Coming into the industry, we are going to need people with the education skills and expertise in many areas,” he said.

“Take law, for example. There is the likelihood that we will need, in the first years, more lawyers and accountants than petrol engineers. There are contracts that are going to be signed, there has to be management and oversight of the agreements, we need people for that. Then there is health and safety. We have to beef up what we are doing in that area… every time there is drilling, there is an Environmental Impact Assessment that is going to be needed. So, that in turn means our Earth and [Environmental] Science faculty has to be beefed up. The works are offshore, so we are going to have to consider what are the environmental marine biology impacts of it. That means we have to poise our marine biology work in the faculty of Natural Sciences to cater for that and the list goes on. Every single faculty needs upgrades to cater for this. Us being an oil and gas-producing country requires us to transition for that new dispensation,” Griffith told Stabroek News in an interview…..