We recently sat down with one of Coterra’s engineers for a chat about International Women in Engineering Day – check it out below!

Name: Lauren Badger

Title: Reservoir Engineer

Location: Midland, TX

How did you get interested in engineering?

Engineering seemed like a logical career path since I enjoyed math and science much more than literature classes. My teachers in grade school helped me realize that math was fun and led by example in having a career they loved each day. Additionally, my high school chemistry teacher, who was a retired Exxon Mobil engineer, shared many stories working in the oil and gas industry that generated my curiosity and interest in this field. My professor used to describe oil and gas industry operations as “amazing and addictive,” and I agree and have found the same.

What did your education path look like? Any info on the steps taken to get where you are now?

I graduated from the Colorado School of Mines, Summa Cum Laude with my bachelor’s in petroleum engineering in 2019. I served as a teacher’s assistant in the petroleum engineering department for 2.5 years under a female pioneer in the petroleum industry, Dr. Ramona Graves. Having her and other strong women in the industry, such as Dr. Jennifer Miskimins, as role models and a support system during my education was very formative. Even though my daily interaction with them has decreased, I still find myself striving to follow in their footsteps.

Any advice for a young woman interested in an engineering future?

Be a fearless leader. Find your passion, earn the respect of your peers, and chase your wildest dreams. Engineering may become your career, but it is not the entire “you.” It is important to immerse yourself in other activities, such as music, service or athletics, that help develop interpersonal skills, time management and creative thinking.

Favorite part of your role?

I love that no two days of my career have ever been the same. Each day is a new challenge, technology, and puzzle, yet there is never really a clear final answer in subsurface behavior. I also am grateful that Coterra provides a unique opportunity to make significant impacts on our company and projects from day one on the job. I am lucky to be surrounded by some of the smartest people in our business.

In a male-dominated industry, how can colleagues support female leaders in this space?

I believe that our team’s successes are greatest when we are performing as a cohesive unit. As colleagues, we can work to create a supportive environment where everyone is aligned to the same goals and ensure all stakeholders are fulfilled.  Differences like gender, race and background inform our unique perspectives, and when we all contribute to the best of our abilities, the end result benefits.  It is important to have a place where you are respected for your contribution and have a network of people who can mentor and encourage each other.