Sarah Heaton is a problem solver with engineering on her mind. The only thing she likes more than solving problems regarding reservoirs, is encountering new challenges that test her. Add breaking stereotypes to the list, and you’ve got a prime example of the next class of petroleum engineers ready to lead the industry. We had a brief Q&A with Sarah about her education, direction and love of Netflix.
Name: Sarah Heaton
Hometown: Norman, Oklahoma
College: University of Oklahoma
Major: Petroleum Engineering
Expected Graduation: May 2017
Q: How has the OERB Petro Scholar program helped you?
A: The OERB Petro Scholar program has not only helped me and my family financially, but it has also helped me in my career path. This is a great honor and being able to say that I am an OERB Petro Scholar has helped me obtain interviews for internships and jobs.
Q: What made you choose a path in energy?
A: I chose Petroleum Engineering because of the unpredictability. No two problems will ever be the same. You never know what the reservoir properties are going to be and how much a well can produce. I find the thrill in not knowing what is going to happen.
Q: What got you interested in oil and gas?
A: I was interested in oil and gas because it has always been around me. We use petroleum products more than people realize. I am interested in oil and gas because we cannot live without petroleum products.
Q: What do you like most about your degree?
A: I enjoy solving problems and how no two reservoirs are alike, creating different challenging problems.
Q: What is your outlook on the future of energy?
A: I believe the future of energy is from unconventional reservoirs. I believe natural gas will start being used more instead of coal. Petroleum products will always be used in our lifetime.
Q: How will your generation (you/peers) help change America’s energy future?
A: I believe that we can help change America’s energy future by creating better recovery techniques to increase the recovery factors of present and future wells.
Q: Do you do any work for nonprofits or charity?
A: With my sorority, I have had the opportunity to raise money for both the United Way of Norman and Girls on the Run. I have participated in the Big Event, OU’s largest service day the past three years. I have also recently started tutoring first graders in reading one hour a week. My sorority’s motto is building strong girls, which I believe the best way to build stronger girls is to be a role model for young girls every day. As a woman in a STEM program, I am able to show young girls that stereotypes are meant to be broken and not to let others’ opinions of what you can or can’t do, define you.
Q: What do you plan to do after college?
A: I am currently applying for jobs after college, specifically as a Reservoir Engineer or a Field Engineer.
Q: If you weren’t answering this questionnaire right now, what would you be doing?
A: If I didn’t have homework or a test to study for, definitely sleeping or watching a movie on Netflix with popcorn. I’m a big fan of Grey’s Anatomy and Gilmore Girls!