Originally published in GTR News | Representatives from the Gas Processors Association (GPA) and Gas Processors Suppliers Association (GPSA) visited the OSU Institute of Technology (OSUIT) campus in September for a ribbon cutting and dedication ceremony of the newly-renovated GPA/GPSA Midcontinent Chapter Classroom in the school’s new Pipeline Integrity Technology program.
The need for skilled engineering technologists that install, operate, maintain, repair and manage the integrity and security of pipelines is on the rise, and the OSUIT program enables students to develop the skills necessary to be successful in the pipeline industry. The midcontinent chapter of GPA and GPSA, incorporated nonprofit trade associations representing the midstream energy industry, donated $25,000 toward classroom improvements for the program.
The renovated classroom includes new teaching tools, technology and equipment, as well as classroom supplies and furniture. This most recent contribution, combined with other scholarship and excellence funds donated to the school, brings a cumulative amount of $100,000 donated by the GPA/GPSA Midcontinent Chapter to OSUIT since last summer.
“The millions of Americans who rely on natural gas to heat their homes or cook their meals may not realize it, but they depend heavily upon the skilled and knowledgeable pipeline technicians every day,” says GPA/GPSA Midcontinent Chapter President Brian Leedy, Exterran. “We are proud to help support this vital mission to train and teach our future pipeline integrity technicians who are in such demand across the country.”
The Pipeline Integrity program started in the fall of 2013 with nine students. One year later, the program is full with 20 students and nearly 100 more inquiries about the program so far.
The program began at OSUIT after industry leaders came to the university asking for a training program to help meet the need of skilled technicians in the pipeline field.
With more than 2.5 million miles of pipelines in the United States transporting 65 percent of the country’s oil and nearly all of its natural gas, having skilled workers to maintain that complex network of pipelines remains a top concern for the energy industry.
“We’re one of the only pipeline integrity programs in the country,” says Dr. Abul Hasan, Engineering Technologies Division chair. “This kind of support for our program is significant, and contributions from organizations like GPA and GPSA are how we’ve been able to improve and grow our curriculum and training.”