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Michael Traylor

Nick Wignall

B.A. English, 2004

Michael Traylor, UD 2004, is a Certified Professional Landman working in the oil and gas industry.  He is involved in researching mineral ownership in tracts of land being developed for oil and natural gas production, negotiating agreements between landowners and energy companies, and interpreting contracts and other legal documents associated with the energy industry.

While English majors may not be normally associated with oil and gas, Michael believes that his literature background has been a benefit to his career.    “My English degree has dramatically enhanced my career in the energy industry.  Communication is essential for success in any business or organization, and my Literature background has been great for that.”

“I work mostly in East Texas and office in Tyler.  I spend time in rural courthouses researching the history of the land all the way back to the sovereignty of the soil, which is either the crown of Spain, the Republic of Mexico, or the Republic of Texas, depending on the year and place.  The history can be really interesting, and interpreting the legal docs, etc, associated with the industry can be very challenging.  It is has been a good fit for me and probably would for other English majors as well.”

Majoring in English did more than just teach him to how to write.  “Analyzing texts, articulating and defending arguments, and being able to see right to the heart of the matter within a given context—I use these lessons from my English classes every day.  I read and interpret documents for a living.  My UD English education has given me a distinct advantage in my field.”

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