Hard times in the oil and offshore industry are reflected in the numbers of students, or lack thereof, applying to participate in oil-related programs. The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim has reported a huge decline, as have other schools around the country.
After years of encouraging students to become engineers or geologists, schools are reporting that interest is now waning. News bureau NTB reported that NTNU, for example, had only 31 applicants to its petroleum program that has 39 spots available. That’s half the number of applicants last year and down from 420 applicants for 53 spots earlier.
NTNU, however, reports a major increase in applications to its communications technology and nano technology programs, up 30 percent from last year. Career counselors at the University of Oslo, meanwhile, have encouraged students to continue opting for programs that can prepare them for a career in the oil industry. Oil will continue to be an important industry in Norway for many years, they argue, and by the time they graduate, students will likely find the job market to be stronger than it is now.