By Wael Agha, published on April 11th, 2018, modified on April 17th, 2018
When I joined Total Qatar in 2005, I was still a professional swimmer. My swimming career gave me the discipline and the strength to reach my goals in life. I must say that it shaped my mind to work in the oil and gas business.
Everything begun in 1992 when I was 14, I started to swim at the Qatar Swimming Federation. Two years later, I joined my first competition and won the first gold medal for Qatar at Arabian Gulf champion ship in Abu-Dhabi. The next year I got three gold medals and one bronze in Sri Lanka during Asian Championship. I also broke a new Asian record in 50 meters freestyle. Naturally, I was heading to be part of the Sydney Olympics Games in 2000. Certainly the most amazing memory of my life! The opening ceremony in the main stadium for the Olympic Games was an extremely overwhelming experience. Ibrahim Ismael, our 400 meters sprinter was carrying the Qatari flag. I didn’t manage to get qualified for the final races but I did well. In the Asian games of Busan in 2002, I finished fourth and the Emir was here to greet me. What a memory.
During those years, swimming was a big part of my life but I also studied very hard. I picked up Chemical engineering at Qatar University and I was graduated in 2005. All the oil and gas companies were hiring at that time and I didn’t hesitate much when I received an offer from TEP Qatar, I already loved France so much. In 2004 I had the opportunity to visit the country and I was willing to work in an international atmosphere with strong French background. I started for around a year offshore on 14/14 days rotational basis as a production superintendent assistant. Qatar Swimming Association requested me to go back to training; they wanted me to get prepared for the 2006 Asian Games which were held in Doha. TEPQ management accepted to get me a position back in the office as an operational engineer. It gave me the chance to train on a daily basis for the competition. One month later, I had two small injuries and took a forced break. I never felt that relaxed! From that moment, I decided to quit my swimming career and to focus on my oil and gas career. In August 2008, Total sent me two years in Paris to work as a process engineer. Back to Doha, I switched to well performance career and since 2014, I am Head of Production. Being a manager is so much more responsibility. Today I enjoy my career, trying to find balance as much as I can between a demanding career and my family.