Topher Fangio ('06) | Information Technology & Computing

topher fangio

Software developer
for Frac Tech Services

Topher Fangio earned his degree from ACU in December 2006 and almost immediately took his computer skills and knowledge to one of the hottest drilling sites in the country - the massive Barnett Shale formation.

You can learn so much outside of class and make connections that will last throughout your lifetime.

The Barnett Shale covers several counties in the Metroplex area and much of the city of Fort Worth, where Topher landed a job with Frac Tech Services, Ltd., an oil and gas services company.

Topher, short for "Christopher," discovered right away that what he had learned in classes at would be put to good use in his new job.

"Within the first few days, I was using many of the things that I learned in my electronics class," he said. "Throughout the last two years, I have built upon the ideas and theories that I learned in my computer science classes."

From classroom to the natural gas industry

Frac Tech takes its name from the service it provides called "well fracturing." When production begins to drop in an oil or natural gas well, a process called "fracturing" can be used to squeeze out remaining deposits.

Large amounts of sand and chemicals are pumped into the well under high pressure to break up or "fracture" the pockets of oil or gas that still remain.

Topher's job involves developing software that his company uses when workers are on a job site fracturing a well. The software acquires data from various devices that tell the operator how much sand has been pumped, what the current pressures are, etc.

The curriculum at ACU gave Topher the skills and knowledge he needed to get a great job, but he found something even more lasting from his ACU experience.

ACU community makes the difference

"I feel that the most helpful thing about ACU is the community," Topher said. "My professors, my classmates, my friends all wanted to help me do well and truly understand what I was learning."

Meeting in professors' homes and just hanging out with faculty and other students were all pluses that Topher found at ACU. He also had the opportunity to put his classroom knowledge to work while still in school.

While at ACU, Topher worked in the computer science and information technology departments and with Team55, a one-stop shop to assist students with technology needs.

"These all helped prepare me for working in the 'real world' and gave me many experiences for which I am very grateful," Topher said.

Topher's advice to new students is to "find some way to get involved with a group of students who are like-minded and have the same goals in life."

He learned that being part of a community at ACU can help students attain goals that might seem impossible.

"You can learn so much outside of class," Topher said, "and make connections that will last throughout your lifetime."

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