The chapter of the Society of Petroleum Engineers at The American University of Cairo (SPE-AUC) is one of only 20 student chapters worldwide to receive the 2014 - 2015 Outstanding Student Chapter award from SPE International. "The highest honor for a chapter,” according to SPE International, this award is given to student chapters that exhibit excellence in industry engagement, operations and planning, community involvement, professional development and innovation. Omar Fathy, president of AUC-SPE in 2014 - 2015 and BG Egypt Endowed Public School Scholarship recipient, and Mark Mohy, AUC-SPE events coordinator, joined oil experts and industry leaders at the SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition in Houston, Texas where they accepted the award on behalf of SPE-AUC.An international organization, the Society of Engineers (SPE) gathers oil industry professionals, researchers, engineers and students under one umbrella, connecting the different groups through various academic and social events. Out of 143,000 members around the world, 50,000 are students. AUC-SPE is one of 337 student chapters.
Fathy believes the chapter's diverse achievements were key to its success. Expanding their reach internationally, AUC-SPE engaged with industry enthusiasts from around the world. "Our chapter carried out new, creative academic and social events last year that distinguished it internationally," he said. "We held the first international petroleum conference in Egypt held by student organizations. We also entered new partnerships with many international companies such as Baker Hughes, Halliburton and Weatherford.”
AUC-SPE also hosted many local events. “We held a local competition that gathered all the petroleum engineering universities in Egypt to compete in academics and sports. Additionally, we hosted many social events for our students on campus," Fathy added.
The 2014 - 2015 chapter included 55 members from different disciplines across AUC. "We accepted members from all different majors, whether engineering or non-science students, because the oil industry deals with different disciplines and careers in real life, so everyone got the chance to learn," explained Fathy.
SPE-AUC benefitted from having such a diverse group of members. "For example," Fathy noted, "for a PR campaign, we need business and marketing students; for media coverage, we need students from mass communication. So, we are always open to students from different majors to bring fresh blood and creative ideas.”
Now a graduating senior, Fathy underscored AUC-SPE’s role in promoting student development outside of the classroom. “We get to deal with the top professionals of the industry and experience how real life works, since we are exposed to several technical and training sessions," he said.