From chemistry major to reservoir engineer

Stephanie Otema Dzandu ’09

Reservoir Engineer, Engineering Department, Ghana National Petroleum Corporation

Academic focus: chemistry major

Research group: Sheila Browne's Lab

I currently work with the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC), Ghana’s National Oil Company. Founded in 1983, GNPC was formed to take part in and monitor all petroleum exploration, development and production in the country essentially for the benefit of its people.

We partner with various international oil companies, most commonly known are Tullow, Kosmos, Hess, ENI amongst many others, partaking in various petroleum operations and activities.

My job has given me a great understanding of petroleum activities, from the drilling of wells through to the economics of how revenue is obtained from the oil. I have come to appreciate how interconnected the petroleum sector is.

As a reservoir engineer, I want to be able to get the most amount of oil out of the reservoir (porous and permeable rock under the sea) at the highest economic recovery. This involves a lot of simulation and modeling using various reservoir engineering software to predict the optimum economic recovery of oil or gas from hydrocarbon-bearing reservoirs.

My background and passion for chemistry prepared me by fueling my love for chemistry and encouraging me to go further with a career in engineering.