It’s no secret that Oklahoma’s oil and natural gas industry is impacting massive job growth across the state — from geologists and engineers to the roughnecks with boots on the ground.

The oil and natural gas industry currently supports more than 10.3 million jobs in the U.S., according to the American Petroleum Institute (API). That number is projected to grow by nearly two million by 2035, with nearly half of those jobs characterized as semi-skilled and skilled trade positions.


As the industry increasingly relies on cutting-edge technologies to become more efficient and safe, trade work is becoming a cornerstone of our energy future.

These could include welders, machinists, truck drivers, electricians and geological technicians— none of which require a traditional four-year degree.

As more specialized and advanced technology is developed for the oil and natural gas industry, more people are needed to manufacture, maintain, operate and repair this technology.

These jobs all play a vital role in the oil and natural gas industry and in making the U.S. the top oil producer in the world. They are also a great opportunity for young people trying to find a career path. Of the nearly 2 million job opportunities coming down the pipe in the coming decades, the API says 41 percent will be held by millennials.


This tells us the future is bright for young Americans, and especially Oklahomans, going into science, technology, engineering and math-related trade jobs that are becoming the backbone of the state’s energy industry and economy.

For more information on career opportunities in oil and natural gas, check out API’s career guide. And, share this article with anyone who is thinking of pursuing a career in energy.

EnergyHQ is powered by the Oklahoma Energy Resources Board – OERB – which is voluntarily funded by the state's oil and natural gas producers and royalty owners. The OERB provides free environmental restoration of abandoned well sites and works to educate the state's citizens about the oil and natural gas industry. For more on the OERB's mission and how it is funded, visit OERB.com.