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Quick Facts

Name: Stephanie Childress

Class of: 2011

Hometown: New Orleans, LA

Major: Chemical Engineering

Current Occupation: Engineer

Words of Wisdom: There is a period of adjustment when you first begin college.  First semester, I struggled with missing my high school friends and the activities that I had participated in.  It took me awhile to realize that everyone else was working through the same transition.

Stephanie Childress, Class of 2011Childress, Stephanie - Profile Pic


Production & Operations Engineer
Occidental Petroleum Corporation


Tell us about yourself.  How did you come to Tulane?
I was born and raised in New Orleans, and although my college search took me all over the country, I realized no school lived up
to the one in my own back yard!  When I received the Dean's Honor Scholarship, my dreams to attend Tulane quickly became a reality.

 

Education

Bachelor of Science in Engineering, Chemical Engineering    2011

Present Day

What do you do?
I work to maximize oil production while minimizing operational cost in existing oil fields in the United States and Middle East.  Additionally, I work on capital programs for future reservoir development and new well completion design for active drilling programs.

What skills do you use regularly?
My job requires me to apply scientific, engineering, and economic principles to a wide array of situations.  It is necessary to be able to work in a multidisciplinary team and communicate ideas to a wide audience. However, the most important trait is the willingness and desire to continue learning. Your degree is just the beginning to a lifetime of learning.  You must be willing to adapt to new technologies and changing market demands to keep yourself viable in the work place.

How did you get to where you are today?
I applied for an interview with Oxy for an internship my junior year.  Although their campus visit was cancelled, the Career Services Center provided me with an HR contact at the company.  A few phone interviews later, I received a call from the company president (and Tulane alumnus) offering me a spot in the summer intern program.  I enjoyed my summer working for Oxy and was overjoyed when I received a job offer before the first day of my senior year.

What are some of the pros of your current position or role?
My job has afforded me many opportunities, including the chance to work internationally. Production engineering is extremely exciting, as it is fast paced and somewhat unpredictable.  Working hands on in large projects has enabled me to have a significant impact in the company and gain positive exposure to upper management.

Some of the cons?
The amount of responsibility that I am given in my job role can be both a pro and a con:  the opportunities and learning potential are endless, but mistakes can be extremely costly.

Undergraduate Experiences

What insights did you have as a college student?
There is a period of adjustment when you first begin college.  First semester, I struggled with missing my high school friends and the activities that I had participated in.  It took me awhile to realize that everyone else was working through the same transition.  I highly recommend diving straight into the numerous campus activities and clubs that Tulane has to offer.  It will help you to begin forming new relationships from the first day and make your transition much easier.  Throughout your four years, continue to enjoy all that Tulane and the city of New Orleans have to offer!  It is an extremely special time - enjoy every moment!

What academic advice would you offer incoming students?
It is never too early to start planning your academic and professional future, but remember to stay flexible.  Utilize campus resources throughout your entire time as a student:  use the Career Services Center to network and find internships, go to a professor's office hours just to talk, or take an upperclassman out for a cup of coffee in exchange for their guidance.  These people are all here to help you make the best of your time at Tulane and beyond.

Lagniappe

Do you have any other recommendations?
Tulane is a great place to learn and a great place to play.  It may take a little practice, but remember to keep the two in balance.  It will make for the best experience possible.

Contact Information

LinkedIn:  schildre@tulane.edu
Email:       stephanie.a.childress@gmail.com

Tulane University, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5000 website@tulane.edu