Oil & Gas Training
and Competency Development

Expert Network

The NExT directors of curriculum (DOC) and training managers are responsible for maintaining the superior standards of our course materials and ensuring the high-quality delivery of our training solutions worldwide. With their respective peer review boards, the DOCs continuously evaluate the technical content of our courses to ensure that we are delivering the latest technology to our clients. The DOCs are responsible for ensuring that our virtual faculty members are not only leaders from a technical viewpoint, but are also competent instructors. Through the NExT comprehensive course and instructor evaluation system, a continuous quality assurance process is in place that enables us to react immediately to any quality assurance issues. All of our DOCs routinely teach in the NExT programs and direct competency assessment projects.

Directors of Curriculum

  Stephen Pickering is the learning content and delivery director for the NExT oil and gas training and development program. Since joining Schlumberger in 2000, he has held various technical positions, including operations manager for seismic reservoir inversion, 4D business development manager, and geophysics domain career leader. Before joining Schlumberger, he was as a seismic data processing analyst for Western Geophysical, a chief geophysicist and exploration manager for Hamilton Brothers Oil and Gas Ltd., and UK exploration manager UK and Europe and manager of exploration resources and technology for BHP Petroleum Ltd. Stephen holds a degree in geology.
     
  Birol M.R. Demiral is the director of curriculum, reservoir engineering, for the NExT oil and gas training and development program. With over 34 years of teaching and research experience in reservoir engineering, he has been one of the directors of curriculum for reservoir engineering with the NExT program since 2011. Prior to joining the NExT program, Dr. Demiral was the Schlumberger professorial chair at the Universiti Teknologi Petronas, Malaysia for 5 years where he held the position of director of EOR mission oriented research and was the head of the EOR Centre. Previously, he was chairman of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering Department at the Middle East Technical University in Ankara, Turkey where he earned all of his degrees in petroleum engineering and was on the staff for 24 years. While working at the METU, he joined the Stanford University Petroleum Research Institute Heavy Oil Group (SUPRI-A) as a post-doctoral research affiliate for a period of 4 years between 1988 and 1992.
     
  Charanjit Jootla is the associate director of curriculum, surface facility, for the NExT oil and gas training and development program. He has extensive experience in onshore and offshore facilities engineering design and operations for oil handling and gas processing facilities. From 1998 to 2012, Charanjit was with Ras Gas as a facilities engineering specialist and subsequently a loss prevention specialist within the same organization. Prior to that time, he worked on various engineering and design-related assignments with McDermott Engineering in Singapore, Transfield Worley in Australia, Petronas Carigali in Malaysia, and Brunei Shell Petroleum in Brunei. He holds a chemical engineering degree from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, India.
     
  David Conroy is the director of curriculum, drilling engineering, for the NExT oil and gas training and development program. From 1997 to 2012, he held a variety of drilling and drilling optimization positions with offshore and onshore operators in several global regions. With a background in drilling process optimization, subsurface geoscience, competency assessment, and business analysis, he has supported several major IOC and NOC exploration-production drilling departments in meeting their operational and planning objectives. He holds a BSc in geology and a PhD in structural geology and deep earth geophysics from The Queen’s University (UK).
     
  David Humphrey is the director of curriculum, drilling, in North, Central, and South America. David has been associated with the NExT program since 2001 and has over 35 years of industry experience. His experience includes project and division level well design and operations management for numerous complex onshore and offshore wells worldwide. Complemented with experience as a division HSE manager and as a production operations manager, David brings the full spectrum of well construction experience. He has worked for medium and large independent oil and gas companies, large international integrated oil and gas companies, and as a consulting engineer. He holds a petroleum engineering degree from the University of Tulsa, an MBA degree from Oklahoma City University and is a licensed professional engineer.
     
  Gary W. Gunter is the director of curriculum, petrophysics and NExT subsurface integration programs, for the NExT oil and gas training and development program. With over 35 years of industry experience and prior to joining the NExT program, he worked for integrated oil and gas producers as a field development reservoir engineer, conducted special advanced EOR studies as a research engineer, and provided technical leadership for the Amoco Petrophysics Development Program. He has a special interest in wettability, carbonate reservoirs, practical aspects of relative permeability and special core analysis, and the evolving science of unconventional petrophysics. During the past 20 years, he has trained over 1,500 individuals, delivered over 150 commercial classes in more than 25 countries, and developed over 15 industry courses. He was an adjunct professor of geoscience and petroleum engineering at the University of Tulsa prior to joining Schlumberger.
     
  Ildar Diyashev is a senior petroleum engineer, primarily responsible for teaching multidisciplinary project-based courses in the NExT oil and gas training and development program. His previous experience includes working for research organizations in Russia and for the Schlumberger Integrated Project Management team where he evaluated performing wells and selected well candidates for production enhancement processes. Other responsibilities include teaching various reservoir and production engineering courses. He holds a PhD degree in petroleum engineering from Texas A&M University.
     
  Jeannine Boubel Smith is the director of curriculum, economics and finance, and multidiscipline programs for the NExT oil and gas training and development program. She joined Schlumberger in 1999 and has held various technical and management roles since that time. Jeannine has expertise in petroleum economics, decision and risk analysis, Merak* planning, risk, and reserves software, planning and budgeting, portfolio management, and training and mentoring. Prior to joining Schlumberger, she spent 20 years with large and small E&P companies where she gained experience in management, reservoir and production engineering, field operations, acquisitions and divestitures, technical and business software, and integrated workflows. Her passion for the oil and gas business began as a roustabout and continued as a production engineer with Mobil after graduation. She holds a BS in petroleum engineering from Texas A&M University, is a registered engineer in the State of Texas, and also has an MEd with a specialization in global training and development.
     
  Laurence Darmon is the director of curriculum, geology and geophysics, for the NExT oil and gas training and development program, and is also a principal geologist for Schlumberger. In his current position, he is responsible for technical content, new course development, instructor verification, and program creation for the geology and geophysics disciplines. His 38 years of experience in the oil and gas industry include both technical and management positions in exploration, wellsite operations, reservoir characterization, and software development. He has extensive global experience in North and South America, Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Southeast Asia, and Australia. Laurence spent 7 years with WesternGeco as manager of reservoir characterization groups and 14 years in software design, creation, and management, including 4 years as president of an independent company. He holds BSc and MSc degrees in geology and petroleum geology, respectively, from the University of London.
     
  Leslie Warren is the director of curriculum, management studies, in the NExT oil and gas training and development program. She has worked for Schlumberger for 23 years in diverse assignments spanning geological/geophysical interpretation, workflow analysis, knowledge management, program and project management, and business consulting. Leslie, a certified PMP® (Project Management Professional) with over 15 years of managing projects in the oil and gas industry, and 9 years of experience in reservoir characterization and well planning, joined the NExT program in 2012 and is also coleader of the Schlumberger Project Management Technical Community. She holds a BS degree in geological sciences from the University of Texas at Austin.
     
  Manuel Bramao is the director of integrated programs, production technology, for the NExT oil and gas training and development program. With more than 30 years of industry experience, principally with Schlumberger, he has integrated and led multidisciplinary teams in Latin America, Europe, West Africa, North Africa, the Middle East, and the Far East on production engineering projects related to production optimization and completions. These projects focused on well diagnosis, formation damage, stimulation (matrix treatments and hydraulic fracturing), and sand face completions. He has also been actively involved in production engineering training (designing, teaching, and supervising training programs and courses) and strategic planning of human resources, developing proficiency matrices, performing and analyzing competence assessments, and developing discipline training roadmaps. Manuel holds an MS in applied thermodynamics and fluid mechanics in mechanical engineering from the Technical University, Lisbon, Portugal.
     
  Marcelo Laprea-Bigott is the director of curriculum, reservoir engineering and unconventional resources, for the NExT oil and gas training and development program. He has been associated with the NExT program since 2001, serving as director of curriculum for reservoir engineering and unconventional resources as well as competency assessments, in addition to being the high-resolution tool business development manager in Schlumberger Oilfield Services. He has 40 years of petroleum engineering experience, including teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in well testing and heavy oil recovery methods at the Universidad de Oriente in Venezuela and serving as visiting adjunct professor at Texas A&M University and the University of Tulsa. He is also the former assistant director of the Energy Institute at Texas A&M University. In the Venezuela private sector, he served as founder, principal owner, and president of SIMUPET, C.A., a petroleum engineering consulting firm and Lamar C.A., an integrated oilfield tubulars management company. Dr Marcelo has also been the president of S.A. Holditch-Venezuela. He holds a bachelor’s degree in petroleum engineering from the Universidad del Zulia, Venezuela and MS and PhD degrees in petroleum engineering from Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas.
     
  Olegario Rivas is the director of curriculum, artificial lift and completions, for the NExT oil and gas training and development program. He began his career with REDA* electric submersible pumping systems and Schlumberger in 1997 in the area of artificial lift and in 2007, he became a production engineering instructor with the NExT program. Olegario has 40 years of career experience in creating and developing new production engineering technologies with an emphasis in the artificial lift area and well completions. From 1977 to 1997, he headed the Artificial Lift-Pumps group at the Intevep RD center of PDVSA in Venezuela.
     
  Rafael Guevara is the director of curriculum, geology and geophysics: Latin America, for the NExT oil and gas training and development program. He has 22 years of experience, specializing in hydrocarbon exploration, 2D/3D seismic structural interpretation, as well as interpolation by matching pursuit (IMAP) and modeling of structural surfaces in the surface and subsoil, both in passive margins and in compressive systems of tectonic complexes. Rafael has extensive experience in field geology, and integrating surface information with subsurface information. His experience extends to advising and consulting in the areas of integrated interpretation, orientated to the geosciences and seismic interpretation, in addition working with groups of consultants in integrated management of assets.
     
     
  Valmore Rodriguez is the director of curriculum, surface facilities and competency assessment champion, with the NExT oil and gas training and development program. His more than 30 years of oil and gas industry experience includes development of competency models for a large number of companies in the Americas, Europe, Asia, and Africa. Recently, he has focused on developing competency models, technical capability development, and teaching for the oil and gas industry. Valmore holds BS, MS, and PhD degrees in chemical engineering.

 

Software Training Managers

  Abdel Aleem Hassan is the training manager, Petrel* E&P software platform, for the NExT oil and gas training and development program. A geophysicist with demonstrated strengths in the field of geophysics, seismic processing, and data acquisition with more than 20 years of experience, he has taught the various Petrel courses since 2005 to the staffs of international and national oil companies. From 2010 to 2012, Abdel established and managed the Schlumberger Information Solutions (SIS) operations in Iraq. Abdel has been associated with international, independent, joint venture, and national oil companies in survey planning, data acquisition, and data processing, in addition to being a Petrel workflow consultant for seismic interpretation groups. Abdel obtained a BS degree in geophysics and an MS degree in engineering geophysics from Mansoura University, and a PhD degree in geophysics from Ain shams University in Egypt.
     
  Andy MacGregor is the training manager, PetroMod* petroleum systems modeling software, for the NExT oil and gas training and development program. He began his career with Schlumberger 21 years ago and has served in a variety of roles ranging from petrophysicist to workflow consultant to product line manager. Andy previously headed the project management team in Schlumberger Information Solutions (SIS) North America where he was responsible for implementing multiple high-value production data management solutions in addition to managing a team of consulting petroleum system geologists in Aachen, Germany. Prior to joining Schlumberger, Andy was a geophysicist with a major oil and gas company for 6 years. He holds a BS degree in physics from the University of Birmingham and an MSc in exploration geophysics from the University of Leeds.
     
  Florence Einaudi is the training manager, Techlog* wellbore software platform, for the NExT oil and gas training and development program. She joined Schlumberger in 2006 as a petrophysicist in the Caspian Sea region. Since 2011, she has been the Techlog training manager and has played an integral role in the development of training class content and material. As a geologist with an academic research and teaching background, she was previously associated with the International Ocean Drilling Program for 7 years as a logging staff scientist where she participated in 7 sea expeditions. During that time, she also instructed classes in geology and geophysics at the University of Montpellier where she participated in slimline logging data acquisition. She holds a PhD degree in geology-geophysics from the University of Aix-Marseille.
     
  John Afilaka is the training manager, reservoir engineering in the NExT oil and gas training and development program. He joined Schlumberger in 1992 as a geotechnical engineer and has held various engineering and management positions in Data and Consulting Services, NExT oil and gas training program, and Schlumberger Information Solutions in Europe, the US, South America, the Middle East, and Africa. He specializes in rock mechanics, reservoir characterization, reservoir simulation, integrated reservoir studies, reservoir modeling, and reserves estimation and risk analysis. John holds a BSc and MSc in mineral resources engineering and rock mechanics, respectively, from Imperial College, London and an MPhil and PhD in engineering geology from Ecole Nationale Superieure des Mines de Paris, Paris, France.
     
  Luis Carlos Jaramillo is the training manager, information management, for the NExT oil and gas training and development program. In 2009, he began as an instructor of and also managing the software and technical curriculum for Schlumberger Information Solutions in the area of information management. Prior to that time, he was a senior consultant and project manager with responsibilities for managing, delivering, and implementing information technology, petrotechnical infrastructure, and E&P information management solutions for the oil industry. He holds a BS degree in systems engineering from the District University of Bogota, Colombia and an MS in petroleum engineering with project management from the Heriot-Watt University.
     
  Margarita Campos is the training manager, production and Merak* planning, risk, and reserves software, in the NExT oil and gas training and development program. She has 14 years of Schlumberger experience in production surveillance projects for shale gas, steam-assisted gas drainage, and waterflooding, as well as production optimization for gas life and liquid loading. Margarita has broad experience in designing and implementing production workflows using Schlumberger Information Solutions technology. She is also an expert in applying artificial intelligence to workover candidate recognition and virtual flowmeters. She holds a BS degree in petroleum engineering from the Universidad de America and an MS degree in petroleum engineering from the University of Texas at Austin.
     
  Steve Nas is the training manager, Drillbench* dynamic drilling simulation software, with the NExT oil and gas training and development program. He has over 35 years of experience in advanced drilling operations with international and small independent oil companies, drilling contractors, and service companies. Steve has worked as a wellsite drilling engineer for over 17 years on land as well as offshore operations, including deepwater drilling. He has been involved in underbalanced and managed pressure drilling operations since 1995, including the first offshore underbalanced drilling operations and the first managed pressure drilling operations from floating rigs and deepwater rigs. He is considered a subject matter expert on drilling hydraulics, multiphase flow and well control. Steve holds a BS degree in electronics and an MSc in drilling engineering from Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen, Scotland.
     
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