The Changing YPCC


The Young Professional Coordinating Committee (YPCC) is a 15-member standing committee responsible for governing programs and activities directed toward YPs. The committee reports to the SPE Board Committee on Education and Professional Activities. YPCC members are appointed by SPE’s president-elect and serve a 1-year term, renewable for up to 3 years. One member serves as chairperson for a year, after which a chairperson-elect takes over and a new chairperson-elect is appointed. The transition happens during the SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition.

Each YPCC member is assigned to one or more SPE regions, which they serve as mentor; they also share best practices within the regions. YPCC members should have experience working on YP programs locally and should be 35 years of age or younger. No more than two YPCC members can be over the age of 35. YPCC representatives are a support to YP committees around the world.


From their beginnings in 2004, YPs as a group within SPE have come a long way. YPs have been recognized in most SPE sections and are increasingly being asked to assist sections with their events and activities, providing opportunities to learn and grow. In this information era, it is also important that YPs share their experiences and help each other’s development. Such a platform for exchanging information and increasing coordination between YP groups is provided by the YPCC. Over the years, YPCC has led many initiatives, such as the Outstanding YP Program awards, the Industry Leader Video series, and the YP Network.

  • Outstanding Section YP Committee awards comprise three categories: Most Improved, Most Innovative, and Overall Excellence. For 2012, the awards were given, respectively, to the YP committees of the Lagos and Warri, Nigeria, sections; Saudi Arabia Section; and the Gulf Coast Section.
  • The Industry Leaders Video Library is a project launched by the YPCC to help engage YPs and advance their careers. The goal of this initiative is to develop an online collection of video interviews with oil and gas leaders from SPE’s six technical disciplines. Interviews have been conducted with professionals from all sectors of the industry.
  • The Young Member Outstanding Service Award is presented to YPs who have made significant contributions within the industry and their sections. The 2012 winners’ names can be found at
  • The publication you are reading—The Way Ahead—is the offspring of a YPCC initiative. It is a magazine dedicated to young SPE members and brings together oil-and-gas-related interviews, news, and articles of particular interest to YPs.

Each year, the YPCC frames its focus areas on the needs of SPE’s younger members, with guidance from the SPE Board. For the upcoming year, the YPCC is focused on providing a better networking platform, improved interaction between student SPE chapters and SPE sections, and integration of YP groups within SPE.

  • YPN—A revamp is planned for the YP Network. The website shall be transitioned to a more user-friendly platform that provides better interactive features for posting queries, comments, and pictures. The platform would be similar to that of a student chapter website.
  • Student chapters—YPs serve as an important link between student chapters and sections, providing mentorship to students and on-boarding them when they become professional members. As the number of student chapters grows, we need to maintain this level of interaction. This year, the YPCC shall push for more YPs to increase interaction with universities by such means as the Ambassador Lecture Program and joint events.
  • Integration of YP groups—As YP groups have grown in size and responsibility, YP events are becoming independent of sections. It is important to realize that YPs are still part of the section and also work for the broader benefit of the section.
  • Focus on technical competency— The YPCC is pushing to enhance the technical competency of SPE YPs by encouraging them to write technical papers and increase their involvement in SPE technical interest groups.

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