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Deadline Nears for Graduate Fellowship

SPE student chapter doctoral students who want to be considered for the Nico van Wingen Memorial Graduate Fellowship in Petroleum Engineering must submit applications by 1 November.
The USD 5,000 fellowship is supported by the SPE Foundation’s van Wingen Fund and is awarded to up to two student members each year. Eligible students are members of an official SPE student chapter, studying at the PhD level, and intending to pursue a career in academia. Any university offering a PhD degree in petroleum engineering and with an SPE student chapter may nominate one candidate.

The fellowship is renewable for up to 4 years. Recipients must submit an annual confirmation from their academic adviser showing progress and a justification for renewal.

image of Amirmasoud Kalantari-DahaghiThe 2012 recipient is Amirmasoud Kalantari-Dahaghi. He is a PhD student in petroleum and natural gas engineering at West Virginia University. He received his BS degree in petroleum engineering from Petroleum University of Technology and his MS degree in petroleum and natural gas engineering from West Virginia University in 2010.

His research interests include modeling and simulation of shale gas reservoirs and computational intelligence applications in shale gas modeling. He has played a coordinating role in several shale gas projects in the Petroleum Engineering and Analytics Research Lab at West Virginia University. He also has published several technical papers, presented in SPE conferences, and served as a technical reviewer for several SPE and other petroleum engineering related journals.

Nico van Wingen was a professor of petroleum engineering at the University of Oklahoma and the University of California. Before that, he worked as an evaluation engineer and consultant. He played a major role in the development of oil production technology in the United States, Austria, Canada, West Germany, Iran, Turkey, and Venezuela. Van Wingen was active on many SPE committees and won the Anthony F. Lucas Gold Medal and SPE Distinguished Member Award in 1985. He was a graduate of the California Institute of Technology, and earned an MS degree in petroleum engineering from the University of Manila, Philippines. Van Wingen bequeathed money to the SPE Foundation to support graduate fellowships, and the foundation initiated the namesake fellowship in 2008.

Application requirements are:

  • Nomination submitted by the SPE student chapter faculty adviser or department chair
  • Application completed by student
  • Official transcripts for all institutions attended
  • Two sealed letters of recommendation
  • Student resume

All documents must be in English and submitted with the nomination form from the faculty adviser/department chair to the Nico van Wingen Memorial Fellowship Committee, SPE Foundation, P.O. Box 833836, Richardson, Texas 75083-3836, USA.

The application can be viewed and downloaded at Please direct all inquiries to

New SPE Sections Added

The SPE Board of Directors approved the addition of two new SPE sections in June: the Northwest Russia Section and the Lisbon Section.

The Northwest Russia Section comprises the city of St. Petersburg and the Leningrad region. The region’s industry is represented mostly by Gazprom Neft, its science and technical center Gazpromneft NTC, and three area universities that have several educational, and research and development programs in oil and gas.

The Lisbon Section will serve SPE members in Portugal. FMC Technologies has started an annual collaboration forum about subsea technology in Lisbon, and there is much onshore and offshore growth in the exploration and production segment in the region.