About the author: My name is Alex and I am a recent graduate of Pennsylvania State University. I started at Williams as an engineering intern last summer in Moundsville, W.Va. I am currently in my first Engineering Development Program rotation as a facilities engineer for Williams’ operations in the Permian basin in Midland, Texas.
Before this rotation, I had only ever been to Texas one other time. I was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pa., so the thought of moving to West Texas was pretty wild. All I knew about West Texas was what I had seen in movies like “Friday Night Lights,” “No Country for Old Men,” and “The Rookie.” But, I was intrigued by both the job description and the adventure that lies within moving to a new and foreign place. With that being said, I was still extremely nervous to pick up and move to a place that had a culture and lifestyle that I was not familiar with.
Working in the Permian has provided me with an experience I would have never anticipated. West Texas is the heart and soul of oil and gas industry and there are unlimited opportunities to learn, whether on-the-job or off. Other than my work experiences, I have visited oil and gas museums, toured different types of energy facilities and joined the Young Professionals in Energy organization. The area has also provided me with plenty of exciting things to do and places to visit outside of work.
There is a definitive culture shock that comes with moving to West Texas from the Northeast, but it has been easy to overcome thanks to both my job and the people I work with. Williams has so many great opportunities and I would suggest to anyone thinking of trying something new to just go for it. You never know, the cowboy boots you once made fun of may end up being your new favorite pair of shoes.