HOD’s Message

The Petroleum Engineering Department (PED) at Curtin University, Malaysia (CUM) is located in Miri which is the location where oil and gas was first found 120 years ago and thus this place is considered as a hub for oil and gas development in Malaysia. The Department offers on-campus programs in petroleum engineering degree at Bachelor of Engineering (BEng) (Honors) and Master of Petroleum Engineering.

CUM offers the only Petroleum Engineering (PE) degree in the State of Sarawak. With the exploration and development of the natural resources, conventional and unconventional reservoirs, this program is strategically important to CUM in terms of educating practical and hands-on engineers who can work in the real life field, in the areas of exploration, drilling, completion, well intervention and production to sustain future energy demand. The Undergraduate program covers both fundamental and advance knowledge of upstream and also fundamental and practical research on significant topics in the oil and gas industry.        

The petroleum engineering programme established in 2011 and then it becomes a department in 2014. The PED is one of seven departments in the Faculty of Engineering and Science at CUM. In just three years, the student’s enrollment grew from 26 in 2012 to 270 in 2016. One reason of this growth is the State’s large resources of conventional oil and gas industry could find itself in the position of retraction of those resources at times. This has made it an exciting moment to educate students on the subject. The BEng degree (Petroleum Engineering) was received EAC and EA accreditation in 2015. 

The course taught in PE programme structure in CUM is undifferentiated programme to the one is offered at Curtin University, Bentley campus. The programme is presented at both campuses in the same format and using the same unit resources and delivery methods. The programme is 4-year full-time. Furthermore, the CUM Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) Student Chapter is actively involved in inviting industry professionals to present short courses, technical presentations, and workshops. In addition, CUM petroleum engineering students are taught by leading industry and scholars’ professionals. Petroleum engineering graduates are also prepared to address the challenges of the world’s energy needs responsibly, to exceed the evolving expectations of operators in the energy industries, to sustain industry leading skills and to be leaders in industry, academia and government. Also students spend a few months in the industry conducting internship programme which is an excellent opportunity for them to get exposed to the real life workplace.

The future of PE program at CUM is very promising based on the strategic location of the city of Miri. With the strong support of the State, the University and the industry, it is expected that high quality hands-on and practical graduates will be produced to join the employees and play a significant role in leading the future of energy industry in the state as well as the country. Talented domestic and international students are highly encouraged to consider PE programme at CUM as a place of choice for their studies. It is very exciting to be part of an educational institute within this expanding oil and gas business environment and it is my honor to serve all students with the best quality of education and study environment.

I invite you to email me (hisham@curtin.edu.my) any time with questions or comments. Thank you so much for all of your support and I hope to see you at upcoming Department, Faculty and University events!


Hisham Khaled Ben Mahmud, Ph.D., MEng, G.Dip., B.Sc. (Chem.)
Associate Professor of Petroleum Engineering Department

Head of Petroleum Engineering Department
Curtin University, Malaysia

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