Karen Ochie is a graduate student pursuing a Dual Degree in Petroleum Engineering, and Data Science and Analytics at the University of Oklahoma. Her current research focuses on the Optimization of CO2 for Carbon Storage and Utilization in Oklahoma. She currently has five publications with the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) and has been a volunteer of the organization since 2014. She was previously the President of Society of Petroleum Engineers University of Oklahoma Student Chapter where she led her Chapter to win the SPE Presidential Award for Outstanding Student Chapter. She also serves as the treasurer for the Society of Women Engineers University of Oklahoma Student Chapter and as the Academic Excellence Chair for the National Society of Black Engineers and the Nigerian Students’ Association at the University of Oklahoma.
Prior graduate studies, she was a planning engineer with ExxonMobil Nigeria and has had professional experience in petroleum engineering, project management and planning engineering, and has a passion for volunteering and giving back to the community around her; both in her engineering space and otherwise. She is very passionate about STEM and is a 1 Million Women in STEM Ambassador. She volunteered as a departmental tutor during her undergrad from her third year through final year and was also the Technical Officer and General Secretary for the SPE Covenant University Chapter; culminating in her being awarded the Best Officer of the Year. She has also previously served as the Assistant Career Guidance Chair for the SPE Lagos Section and was recently awarded the SPE Lagos Section Service award for this position. Given these feats, the SPE Nigerian Council awarded her with the Girl in STEM Leadership Award for Outstanding Performance in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) in 2018, the SPE Lagos Section awarded her with the Young Professionals Service Award for Outstanding Performance in 2019 Board – for volunteering selflessly for the Lagos Section, and the SPE Port Harcourt Section 103 and SPE Ghana Section 197 also awarded her with The Pathfinder Award during their E-Summit in 2020.
She is also the founder and director of The Ije Awele Foundation; a cancer risk reduction foundation in line with UN-SDG 3. She also volunteers for several other impactful initiatives such as Mathematics for Life Foundation, Hire Heroes USA and is the Global Outreach Chair for Nigeria and Kenya with the Society of Women Engineers. She holds a bachelor's degree in Petroleum Engineering (First Class Honors) from Covenant University.