Musfirah’s potential for engineering was spotted while she was still at school. After winning a scholarship from the Malaysian government, she travelled to Australia to study at one of the country’s top technical schools.
“I studied Petroleum Engineering with the Australian School of Petroleum at The University of Adelaide,” said Musfirah. “During my third summer holiday, I had the chance to work at an oil and gas company. That gave me a real insight into how exciting a career in this industry could be, and how much I could learn from the people around me.”
After graduating, Musfirah moved back home to commence her career. Speaking to members of the Shell Graduate Programme about their experiences encouraged her to look into the opportunities open to her in Shell.
“I already knew that Shell is highly committed to supporting employees’ development,” she said. “Since joining, I’ve discovered for myself how well the team here understands that graduates need to be given time for hands-on training within the business.”
Musfirah joined Shell as a Graduate Reservoir Engineer, based in Miri, Sarawak, and was quickly immersed in a ground-breaking deep-water project, where the oil supplies lie several kilometres below the ocean’s surface.
“Shell is developing new technology that contributes to cleaner and safer energy and isn't afraid to challenge, or be challenged by, different people’s opinions. Deep water projects like ours are a real area of focus for the company,” she explained. “We’re currently at the planning stage and I will stay with the team through to its completion. Over the next three years I will have the opportunity to get involved in a wide variety of activities designed to keep building up my experience.”
Already, Musfirah has been involved with Health, Safety and Environment-critical work: “Three months after joining I discussed my next challenge with my supervisor. I went from working with documentation in a supporting role to collecting, checking and presenting important data. If I make a mistake, it could have serious consequences, so while it's a job that carries a lot of responsibility, I'm happy that I’m an integral and critical part of the team.”
The support of her mentor and colleagues means Musfirah is developing her skills and building her confidence.
“They really motivate me to stretch myself,” she said. “I was quite shy when I first joined, so they suggested I took part in training that has helped me to speak up. I've now built up a network of people from different disciplines who are always happy to help me when I need their guidance. There’s a real mix of people here – from all five continents in the world, different age groups, and with a good mix of men and women. I feel that their backing will help me to excel as an engineer.”
Looking to the future, Musfirah is excited about gaining international experience with Shell once she completes the Shell Graduate Programme. She said: “Shell has a vast portfolio of projects around the world. I would like to travel and learn from these different projects to extend my knowledge.”
“Working for Shell brings me more job satisfaction than I ever expected,” she added. “When one of our senior leaders visited Malaysian employees, he reminded us that in order for Shell to achieve its goals, employees like us have to keep sharing our opinions and business knowledge. It gives me a real sense of belonging when I know that Shell truly values my contribution.”