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Martina C. Helfferich

  • West Virginia University, MA in Professional Writing and Editing, 2012helfritz
  • Washington & Jefferson College, BA, 2009
  • Chevron North America Exploration and Production Company
  • Appalachian/Michigan Strategic Business Unit
  • Pittsburgh, PA

After completing my MA in Professional Writing in May 2012, I pursued a position in the Health, Environment, and Safety department at Chevron in Pittsburgh, PA. My familiarity with Chevron was limited when I started; I knew Chevron worked primarily in oil and natural gas and was a Fortune 500, international company. However, I did not expect to learn that Chevron’s commitment to the environment, along with the safety and well-being of its employees, would be as strong as it is.

In my communications role working for Chevron, I am part of the planning and performance group in the HES department of the Pittsburgh office. Our group focuses primarily on business planning and metrics, budgeting, event planning, incident management, and training. More specifically, I work on projects in technical writing and editing, corporate communications, and event planning.

Overall, my experience as a graduate student at WVU helped to develop my organizational and planning skills, as well as my editorial expertise. I particularly enjoyed Dr. Gouge’s graduate Editing course; I continue to develop my editorial knowledge in my role at Chevron. My internship at FINRA (the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) in the Washington D.C. metro area was also a foundational part of my education. I worked in the training department and focused on usability testing, as well as technical editing of training and software manuals. I have carried over the skills I developed at FINRA to my role working at Chevron.

I most enjoy my department’s commitment to safe work practices and employee health and safety. My position is a fulfilling one for many reasons, primarily because I am working in a role well-suited to my education in professional writing and editing, but also because I know I am contributing to our company’s goal toward incident-free operations.