The Houston Independent School District (HISD), together with IPAA, is set to open a high school focused on the study of energy in the city of Houston in the fall of 2013.
Below is a letter from IPAA president and CEO Barry Russell.
Dear IPAA Members and Colleagues:
I am pleased to announce that the Houston Independent School District (HISD) Board of Trustees voted unanimously to extend its existing partnership with IPAA at the newly proposed HISD Energy Institute High School. Houston ISD asked IPAA to create an Energy Institute Advisory Board and invited me to serve as co-chair with Superintendent Dr. Terry Grier. The school is dedicated to the study of energy through a curriculum based in engineering, geosciences, offshore technology and other high demand trade professions, such as ROV piloting, welding and process technology. The Energy Institute is set to open in the fall with 200 incoming ninth graders and will add an additional 200 students each year.
The IPAA Education Center has enjoyed a seven year relationship with HISD through our three IPAA petroleum academies at Milby and Westside High Schools and the Young Women’s College Preparatory Academy. These energy academies have been tremendously successful in making math and science more meaningful and relevant to students, as well as introducing them to the myriad careers within the energy industry. Due to the excellence and popularity of our academies, Dr. Grier states that he is seeking our help to enhance the quality of curriculum, as well as overall instruction.
Dr. Grier says that the Energy Institute will capitalize on the world-leading energy industry, representing the fields of engineering, geosciences, and cutting edge technology, which is further enriched by the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) curriculum being taught within our existing petroleum academy programs.
More than 1,000 students are currently enrolled in the IPAA Petroleum Academy programs. Last year, we announced a partnership with the Petroleum Equipment Suppliers Association (PESA) - a vigorous supporter of our academies since their inception. We are now called the IPAA/PESA Education Center.
Thanks to the annual George A. Alcorn Scholarship Breakfast, in the past three years, our graduates have been awarded more than $300,000 in college scholarships. Key components of the IPAA/PESA Education Center academy programs include externship programs, guest speaker series, dual credits, speaker series, field trips, industry software donations, social and career networking, professional and leadership training, academic and public speaking competitions, engineering and geosciences summer camps, and mentoring programs, among many other facets.
There has never been a greater opportunity for students to begin preparing themselves to enter the high demand, challenging and lucrative careers provided within our industry. If you are interested in helping, through volunteering time, financial support, curriculum materials, training or more, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
I’d like to thank HISD Superintendent Dr. Terry Grier and Doris Richardson, the founding director of the IPAA/PESA Education Center, for their efforts in developing the new Energy Institute. I look forward to working with Dr. Grier on the newly established Energy Institute Advisory Board (listed to the left). I'd also like to recognize Halliburton's Galen Cobb and the Petroleum Academy Advisory Board for their extraordinary support to the IPAA/PESA petroleum academies.