Career Story: Principal Corrosion Engineer For A Public Utility

Principal Corrosion Engineer For A Public Utility

Job Title: Principal Corrosion Engineer - New England

Type of Company: I work for a public utility which distributes natural gas to homes and businesses.

Education: BS, Industrial Technology, UMass-Lowell

Previous Experience: I have done this job since I was a senior in high school.

Job Tasks: A corrosion engineer in the natural gas industry is primarily responsible for protecting steel pipelines from corrosion. We are required to do this by the federal government for all steel gas mains installed on or after 8/1/1971. We have one year to have the pipeline cathodically protected and have to test the pipe annually to make sure the protection's intact. This has to be done for every pipe in service. We use both in-house technicians and contractors to do the testing; they have to have passed an operator qualifications test in order to perform the work -- another government mandate. We also have to inspect all piping that is exposed to the atmosphere once every three years, not to exceed 39 months. We get audited periodically by both the state and federal government to make sure that we're adhering to the law.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of the job is being able to work outside and meet people.

The worst is getting the folks working in the field to understand corrosion control, and what we need every time a hole is opened up on a gas main that needs work. We supply a lot of training, but corrosion control is very technical and can be confusing to basic laborers in the field. Overall, though, it's a great and rewarding job.

Job Tips: Stay in school and get your college degree, but even before college, be sure to apply yourself in high school. I didn't realize how much my job required a thorough knowledge of both math and English. I have learned along the way, but wish I'd worked harder in school. In the future, of course, computer skills are going to be a must in this industry; words and phrases like "field data capture," "remote monitoring," "desktop applications," "email" etc. are on everyone's lips and they're an everyday part of the job. At the moment, however, there is only one college (in Ohio) that offers a corrosion degree.

Additional Thoughts: One of the most important personal qualities you will need is an ability to communicate. Face-to-face communication is very important. Don't hide behind an email or a voice mail; get right out there and discuss issues, concerns and recommendations one-on-one.

Popular Schools offering Industrial Engineering Programs

Results:  5
Matching School Ads

San Joaquin Valley College - A Private Junior College.

Selected Campus Locations:
  • Salida

You can get started on a new career with Institute of Technology.

For more information about our graduation rates, the median debt of students who completed the program, and other important information, please visit our website at www.iot.edu/disclosure

Selected Campus Locations:
  • Clovis

With an education from an Art Institutes school, imagine what you could create.

Selected Campus Locations:

Purdue University offers a strong foundation of tradition and history.

Selected Campus Locations:
  • Online

100% Online & No Standardized Testing

Selected Campus Locations:
  • Online
Selected Programs:
  • BS in Aeronautics

Additional Career Stories for Industrial Engineers

The inside stories from people actually working in the field.
Click a story title to show the story, and click the title again to hide it.

All Types

You are visiting:

What are Career Stories?

Career Stories are concise, real-world career overviews written by people relating their personal career experiences and wisdom. They provide invaluable insights and mentoring advice to students and career changers.

Most stories include:

  • a typical day or project
  • tips and advice
  • best and worst parts
  • educational background
  • previous experience

Browse hundreds of Career Stories

More Details On This Career

Please also see our detailed information about Industrial Engineers, including:

Back to Top