OMV Founds International Petroleum Academy in Austria

Austria's OMV reported Tuesday that it plans to establish a petroleum academy with one of the country's leading universities.

OMV said, as part of a $13.5-million-per-year initiative to expand cooperation with the Montanuniversität Leoben, it will double investment in research and teaching at the university and will see it establish the International Petroleum Academy, which will offer a master's degree program. The academy will allow the university to produce twice as many graduates, including an international pool of graduates, for the oil and gas industry.

The initiative is a direct consequence of OMV's plans – outlined at the end of July – to recruit 1,600 additional technical staff by 2016 as part of its strategy to see it achieve significant expansion in its exploration and production activities.

The firm said that while there is strong demand for petroleum engineering and geosciences graduates, as well as demand for experienced experts, intensifying its cooperation with Montanuniversität Leoben is an "important step" in increasing the potential of recruiting graduates with the necessary expertise.

The master's degree will be launched in the autumn of 2014 at the International Petroleum Academy. Management skills such as a foundation in economics and communication will be taught alongside health and safety and a responsible approach to society and the environment, said OMV. The firm added that the International Petroleum Academy will offer cutting-edge educational approaches combined with practical industry expertise.

The degree follows the establishment of an international bachelor's degree by OMV and Montanuniversität Leoben in 2012 that trains young people for work at companies like OMV. The new program will be conducted in English, allowing Austrian and other non-native English speakers to acquire the language skills they will need in their professionals lives, OMV said.

OMV CEO Gerhard Roiss commented in a company statement:

"We view investment in the education of young people as part of our corporate responsibility. Furthermore, this will enable us to contribute to Austria's competitiveness on the international stage."


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