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    Raymond International Pipeline Services Group Internship

    A hands-on, two-week program for engineers

    Photo: Raymond Internship students

    The Raymond International Pipeline Services Group provides an invaluable opportunity for students in Syracuse University’s College of Engineering and Computer Science to travel to the Persian/Arabian Gulf region to learn first-hand about a real issue impacting the Arabian Peninsula—the supply of potable water in arid regions. Raymond International Headquarters is in Bahrain and has offices in Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait and UK.

    Drinking water in Arabian Peninsula countries is provided mostly through desalinating seawater. In the past 30 years, billions of dollars have been spent building new desalination plants in the region. Desalination is both costly and a drain on the hydrocarbon energy resources that could otherwise be sold on international markets. The financial burden on governments is set to worsen as water consumption rises due to industrial development and population growth. As a result, some states are now considering ways in which demand can be brought under control.

    Raymond International managing director and Syracuse University alumnus Mike Venutolo is a key sponsor of this program that enables interns to spend two weeks examining the challenges and advances in solutions to the water supply problem.

    Professor Sam Salem, the Yabroudi Chair Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, coordinated the activities and planned the curriculum for the internship since its inception in 2011. Prior to departing for the internship, the students, who are selected through a competitive application process overseen by CIE faculty, participate in cultural preparation conducted by Professors Sam Salem and Sam Clemence, as well as other faculty from the Middle Eastern Studies Program in the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. The preparation continues when they arrive in Dubai where they spend the first day of their trip attending briefings and informational background lectures about the region, societal challenges and water production and transmission.

    They then travel to Kuwait where they meet other SU alumni in the region and visit a Raymond facility to spend more time in the field. This also includes a desalination plant, pumping station and steel pipe factory as well as corrosion coating and lining plants. The students are shown state of the art water transmission systems being constructed in remote desert locations.

    The value of the up-close and interactive internship provided for students is immeasurable. They gain a greater appreciation and understanding of the infrastructural scenarios detailed in textbooks and the role engineering plays in the solutions. The many unique learning opportunities for SU students, like the Raymond International Internship, are made possible through the generosity of alumni and their affiliated corporations. It is ongoing connections to SU by such alumni that allows the University to promote scholarship in action and to connect more tangibly with communities around the world. 

    To learn more about this internship please contact:
    Ossama M. Salem
    Department Chair and A. Yabroudi Chair Professor