Energy: Strike It Rich

A gusher for geologists

Next to oil itself, the hottest commodity in the energy business these days is the person who knows where to drill for oil and gas. Small independent firms and major corporations alike are aggressively fighting over geologists, petroleum engineers and geophysicists as though they were free-agent baseball players batting .325. Budding geoscientists with no more than bachelor's degrees can now command starting salaries of $24,000 a year and more. At the Colorado School of Mines, energy firms are booking choice recruiting dates on campus more than a year in advance. Says Joseph Finney, chairman of the school's geological...

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