Odessa College Foundation received a $10,000 infusion from Chevron for the Chevron Instrumentation Scholarship, which will help about 20 students.
The check was presented in the Saulsbury Conference Center in the Electronics Technology Building at OC. The contribution continues Chevron’s support for the instrumentation program and those who receive the support must be an instrumentation major seeking a certificate in instrumentation; maintain a minimum overall GPA of 2.5; and must have a 3.0 or higher GPA in their instrumentation courses. The scholarship awards are $500 per semester.
Dean of Career Technical & Workforce Education Diane Carrasco said with this growth comes a responsibility to develop a skilled, robust workforce that will join the Permian Basin’s energy sector.
“Odessa College is honored to partner with Chevron in developing this workforce. Thank you to Chevron for being a partner in this development because we certainly couldn’t make it happen without you,” Carrasco said.
“One of the prominent reasons our students struggle to complete a credential is financial instability and it is through generous donations such as today’s that’s going to help scholarship students complete their program,” she added.
Carrasco added that the OC-Chevron partnership has led to equipment and renovations that have made it possible for those gathered Wednesday to stand in “this beautifully designed Chevron Regional Center for Energy Education.”
Phets Sovilay, operations recruiter for Chevron, said the company is happy to be part of the partnership and glad to present the check.
“We’ve had a tremendous partnership with Odessa College throughout the years and we hope to continue that. One of the things that we have as far as our Chevron values go is partnership, so we’re strengthening this partnership and with that we’re helping the community grow and that’s what we’re all about,” Sovilay said.
Vice President for Instruction Valerie Jones said contributions like this have a tremendous impact on students and can transform their lives.
“It is really impressive the technology our students have access to and it’s made possible through the partnerships we’ve had with Chevron …,” Jones said.
She added that the Fab Lab is another example of the fruits of Chevron’s support.
Williams added that new employees, faculty members and technology have been added to the instrumentation program.
“We have four full-time faculty, plus adjuncts. The classes are all full,” Jones said.
The program includes mostly adult students, but also youngsters attending OCTECHS, an early college high school on the OC campus where students can earn a high school diploma and associate degree simultaneously.
Equipment and technology change so rapidly that partnerships are needed, Jones said.
“(The) industry continues to change and grow so rapidly, we need them to tell us what direction things are going so they can help with the development of the training concepts as well,” Jones said.
Sovilay, operations recruiter for Chevron, said the way donations to OC helps the company is that OC is partnered with the community to help advance education in the Permian Basin.
“One of our core values at Chevron is strengthening our partnerships with our communities, so this is one of the ways we do that. By donating money and scholarships to OC, we want to help enable students to be able to come to a place like OC to get that technical education,” Sovilay said.
“That way, they can explore career options. They don’t necessarily have to go to work in the oil and gas industry. They don’t necessarily have to come work for Chevron specifically, but it at least gives them that pathway to explore those options. If they did want to come work for a company like Chevron, that’s why we donate money for OC,” he added.
Jones said instrumentation, which is used interchangeably with automation and robotics.
“It’s the utilization of technology and machinery through computer programming to be able to navigate and manage tasks,” Jones said. “That may be pressure management in a plant … the automation of factory equipment. It can be running the oil and gas machinery remotely. It’s all of those types of things.”