Roustabout Drilling Technician (RigOne)

Roustabout Drilling Technician (RigOne)

Training the next generation of entry-level drilling rig crew members who are promotable, retainable, and safety-conscious

The Roustabout Drilling Technician (RigOne) Program is a visionary project that facilitates the recruitment and training of the next generation of entry-level rig crew members. Designed by and for the drilling contractors, the program advances an innovative solution for the big crew change: trained, technically educated, safety conscious and promotable new hires.

Our vision is founded on creating a realistic rig environment for new-hire induction, orientation and training. For drilling contractors, the Roustabout Drilling Technician (RigOne) Program offers relevant, robust and industry-driven training at a world-class facility designed by and for the drilling industry in collaboration with Houston Community College, one of the nation’s largest community colleges.

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Roustabout Drilling Technician (RigOne) Program – Marketable Skills Achievement Award

The Roustabout Drilling Technician (RigOne) Program at Houston Community College is a fast-track training program designed by drilling contractors. This 12-week program consists of three non-credit courses:

  • Employee Success in Energy (4 weeks, 64 hours)
  • Basic Mechanical Skills for Energy (4 weeks, 64 hours)
  • Drilling (4 weeks, 64 hours)

The RRoustabout Drilling Technician (RigOne) Program curriculum is aligned with the International Association of Drilling Contractors (IADC) Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (KSA) profiles. In addition, trainees earn several industry credentials and certificates. Upon successful completion of the program, trainees receive a Marketable Skills Achievement award from Houston Community College and an invitation to the exclusive Roustabout Drilling Technician (RigOne) Career Fair.


Roustabout Drilling Technician (RigOne) Facility

HCC is constructing a Safety and Skills Training Laboratory on their Northeast Campus. This training lab platform, called the RigOne Facility, replicates the essential components of the rig work environment for new hires (Offshore Roustabouts/Onshore Roughnecks). Students practice hands-on skills on the RigOne Safety and Skills Training Laboratory during the last 128 hours of the program. This provides our students with an advantage over other programs; we refer to this advantage as the RigOne Advantage.

 The RigOne Safety and Skills Training Laboratory includes:

  • Multiple level deck areas for trainees to learn safe skills in pipe and cargo handling as well as personnel transfer while working around cranes, forklifts, and air tuggers.
  • Dedicated areas for skills including material handling, tank cleaning, confined space entry, routine maintenance, and hand tool skills.
  • General rig-based safety skills such as basic first aid, firefighting, station bills and muster, and lock-out/ tag-out.

The Rig Safety and Skills Training Laboratory is more than just the usual training of new hires. It is an experience! Trainees confront real-life situations requiring aptitude, knowledge, and skills on a daily basis. 


Why is the Roustabout Drilling Technician (RigOne) program needed?

While strategies and programs for induction and orientation training abound, three historical facts have changed very little:

Retention: Newly hired employees still abandon their drilling jobs at a high rate.

Injury: IADC Statistics show that nearly 40% of rig-based accidents resulting in injury happen with crew members in their first 180 days of work.

Growth: Increased rig utilization and new construction demonstrate that the requirement for new personnel is not just numbers; it is also the need for quality personnel. The “new crew” must not only perform basic duties safely, but must also have the skills and abilities to be promoted and grow within the company.



Is there an age limit?

No. However, the work is physically demanding and work shifts are typically 12-hours per day.

What are the requirements?

The program mirrors the offshore industry’s employment requirements. Generally, a person must have a background clear of felonies and major misdemeanors, physical capability, and be drug-free. Additional requirements and details are presented during the Information Session. 

Is a high school diploma or GED needed?

Drilling contractors typically require a GED or high school diploma. The program mirrors industry requirements in order to qualify.

Do you need a TWIC (Transportation Workers Identification Credential) card?

Drilling contractors frequently require a TWIC card be either “in-hand or in process” for employment. 

Will there be funding for Veterans?

HCC is working with the VA to identify ways and means for veterans to have their tuition paid. Veterans are commonly sought after by drilling contractors and are a preferred hire for them.

When are classes available?

New classes are offered each month.  

Is there guaranteed employment?

No, HCC does not guarantee employment. Drilling contractors have been part of the program because they project significant openings in the next few years. They are very interested in this program and have guided HCC.

Will class take place Monday through Friday?

The Introduction course is a hybrid course that is four weeks in duration, students attend class three days a week. Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6 PM to 10 PM and Saturdays from 8 AM to 5PM.



What campus will the training take place?

The Introduction course is currently offered at the HCC-Northeast Campus.

Is there a limited amount of people?

Yes. Each class section is limited to 20 trainees. 

Is there a gender preference?

No. There are physical tasks, generally involving lifting, twisting, grasping and climbing. A person must be physically fit and able to lift 50 pounds. Roustabouts move cargo and pipe under the direction of a crane operator.

Will there be a certification award upon completion?

Plans include three IADC certificates. There may be other industry certificates based on our advisory committee’s input.

Will financial aid or scholarships be offered?

We are working with HCC Foundation and other agencies to identify scholarships and financial aid opportunities.

What steps must one complete for enrollment/registration?

Potential applicants must attend a free, two-hour Information Session prior to enrollment. You may sign up for a session online or by contacting us at 713.718.2070 or

Will certified professionals be instructing the course?

The instructors will have drilling industry experience and credentials that meet HCC’s requirements for professional faculty.

Will books be provided?

All instructional materials are included in the tuition cost.



A Career as an Entry-Level Rig Crew Member/Roustabout

Nature of the Work

A Roustabout ensures the safe and proper rigging and slinging of loads lifted and moved by an offshore unit’s deck cranes and other lifting equipment. During non-crane operational modes, a Roustabout uses hand and power tools to perform maintenance and repairs to drilling rig equipment and systems and carries out general cleaning and other manual labor tasks as assigned and directed.

Employment Projections

As of May 2016, more than 22,840 Roustabouts were employed in Texas. Job growth is expected to be nearly 8,520 through 2018. The average hourly wage for a Roustabout in Houston is $18.57 (Bureau of Labor and Statistics, May 2016) the average salary for an entry- level offshore Roustabout is $ 51,000.


Admission Steps

Before enrolling in the RigOne Program, applicants must attend a free two-hour information session on Oil & Gas Careers. During the session, applicants learn why HCC and the drilling contractors partnered to build this program, how to apply for the program, and how to register for classes.


What are the Prerequisites?

ENER 1040 - CPR

ENER 1030-ENER 1040

PTRT 1003 - ENER 1030 & ENER 1040


To request more information about this course click on the link below to fill out and submit a questionnaire form. A member from the Industrial Technology & Energy department will contact you as soon as possible.

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Contact Us

Global Oil and Gas Drilling Training Center

555 Community College Drive, Houston, TX 77013