Texas Tech University

Fulbright Scholar Leaves Home to Make Lasting Impact at Texas Tech

Jenae Fleming

December 16, 2015

Zeeshan Haq is working towards a master’s degree in petroleum engineering from Texas Tech.

Zeeshan Haq
Zeeshan Haq

Zeeshan Haq applied for the Fulbright Scholars program to expand his knowledge of shale gas reservoirs. But in order to do so, Haq would have to leave his family and the only place he had ever called home.

Born and raised in Karachi, Pakistan, Haq attended the university there and earned his undergraduate degree in petroleum engineering.

Haq jumped at the opportunity to apply for the Fulbright scholarship and pursue a master's degree at Texas Tech University.

“I realized my professional growth was somewhat stagnant in Pakistan,” Haq said. “I knew that in order to excel further in my field I would need more knowledge and expertise.”

Impressed by the success and development shale gas plays in the United States, Haq chose to look at colleges in Texas because of its primary focus on oil and gas engineering. This brought Haq to Texas Tech University and the Whitacre College of Engineering.

Haq said the professors in the petroleum engineering department have the experience he longed to gain.

“The Department of Petroleum Engineering at Tech has industry-experienced faculty,” Haq said, “and a couple of the professors are working on the topic of shale gas reservoirs, which is the topic of my research.”

James Sheng, an associate professor in the petroleum engineering department at Texas Tech, said he has seen Haq gain a lot from his Fulbright experience, even in the short amount of time he has been at Texas Tech.

“He has been exposed to different scholar cultures and environments,” Sheng said. “He also has participated in more academic and professional events since he has been at Texas Tech.”

Since arriving at Texas Tech, Haq has helped found the Pakistan Student Association (PSA) and serves as the current president. PSA is an organization with an objective to promote the culture and values of Pakistan among Pakistanis studying at Texas Tech.

For the organization's first event, the members chose to honor the victims of earthquakes that hit back home.

“We came up with the idea of holding a candlelight vigil to show support to the earthquake victims of both Pakistan and Afghanistan.” Haq said. “At the same time, it let people know more about the formation of a new student organization on campus.”

Richard Verrone, faculty adviser for PSA, said Haq has been a great asset to the organization and was a big help when coordinating its first event.

“At the event, he spoke as PSA's president and also conducted interviews with local media after the vigil to answer more questions about the event and PSA,” Verrone said. “He was very proactive, organized and successful in making sure the event went off without a hitch.”

Haq said he would recommend everyone have the opportunity to experience all that he has through the Fulbright Scholar program.

“This scholarship is designed to provide you with cultural exchange and to polish many dimensions of your personality,” Haq said. “The experience and exposure being a part of the Fulbright family gives you is incredible.”