This half-term, year 11 have started their Organic Chemistry topic, in which they will learn about the structure and properties of carbon-based molecules. One of the most important families of molecules is alkanes, a key constituent of crude oil. To give this topic some context, all of year 11 had a talk about the energy industry, given by a former oil industry worker (me). I talked the pupils through the uses of crude oil, the demand for it and how it is obtained.
The girls learned about life on oil rigs and had a chance to discuss the pros and cons of a career in the industry, discussing the pay, career progression, working conditions and environmental impact. The talk closely followed the COP26 talks and linking to that, we looked at other careers within the energy industry. To help the girls to understand the trends in energy use and the growth industries of the future, we were fortunate to be joined by an Energy Industry Analyst from Scottish and Southern Energy. Hopefully, for some of the girls, this sparked an idea that might lead them to a successful career in the energy industry.