Summer Intern Series

Summer Intern Series: Thomas Marino

IMG_9936The New York Power Authority’s (NYPA) intern program provides top college students with the opportunity to gain broad experience working for the nation’s largest public power organization.

Thomas Marino attends SUNY University at Buffalo, pursuing his degree in Finance. He currently works in the Treasury Department at the White Plains Office.

My internship at the New York Power Authority has been a valuable learning experience. I have had the opportunity to work with the Treasury Department, which has exposed me to various aspects of the Energy industry’s financials.

I have worked alongside the Senior Investment Analyst to assist in managing the Authority’s fixed-income investment portfolio with the objectives of preserving principal, meeting cash flow requirements, and maximizing return within the constraints of liquidity and risk parameters. I’ve also gained exposure to valuable financial tools, such as Bloomberg, which is utilized when purchasing and selling authorized securities, to price counterparty collateral, to evaluate counterparty and securities credit ratings, and to monitor market news and economic data.

The Treasury Department currently has three active RFP’s outstanding. I supported the Treasurer in looking for potential underwriters for future bond deals; I was responsible for reviewing proposals and coordinating the review process between Treasury, Procurement, and the Authority’s Financial Advisor. Additionally, I have assisted the Deputy Treasurer with the 2 fixed income investment manager RFP’s associated with the Other Post-Employment Benefit Trust and the Nuclear Decommissioning Trust.

In accordance with the Authority’s Energy Commodity and Credit Risk Management procedures, all counterparty statements need to be verified. I am responsible for the verification process and for sending out notifications with regards to the counterparties who settle transactions via the CME (Chicago Mercantile Exchange).

I appreciate the exposure my internship has given me to date and look forward to continued learnings over the remainder of the summer.

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Summer Intern Series

Summer Intern Series: Nathanael Kankiewicz

Kankiewicz237pxThe New York Power Authority’s (NYPA) intern program provides top college students with the opportunity to gain broad experience working for the nation’s largest public power organization. This summer, more than 30 undergraduate and graduate students are participating in the intern program. Throughout the summer, we will feature individual profiles of our summer interns and provide a detailed look at their personal internship experiences.

Nathanael Kankiewicz attends SUNY Buffalo State, working towards a degree in Electrical Engineering Technology with a focus on electronics and smart grid technology. He currently works in the Instrumentation & Controls unit within the Operations Group at the Niagara Power Project in Lewiston, NY.

Every day in the Instrumentation & Controls Department is different. There are a variety of devices we install and monitor, and I have had the opportunity to visit locations besides the Lewiston plant to inspect our instruments. I have also been offered a chance to learn how to react and assess the situations surrounding a fault. Under the guidance of Jim Rankin and Daniel Ver, I have taken every chance I can get to absorb the information this experience offers.

Over the past couple of weeks, I have been updating our satellite clock distribution network for protective devices. The goal of this work is to set up the infrastructure for their synchronization. This will allow for greater accuracy in our data collection and evaluation of events, both in testing and in regular operation.

My most recent work involved researching component information, and contacting manufacturers about items that need to be ordered. This work will continue with the writing of purchasing requests for the system I am currently designing.

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NYPA Initiatives, NYPA Staff

30% of Utility Workers Retiring in 5 Years, New Recruiting Strategies Essential

By Gil C. Quiniones

On June 16th, I’m joining Con Edison Chairman and CEO John McAvoy, NY Public Service Commission Chair Audrey Zibelman, President and CEO of NYSERDA, John Rhodes, NY Green Bank President Alfred Griffin and Ken Daly, President of National Grid to discuss New York’s energy policies and challenges and opportunities facing electric utilities at New York Energy Week. I’m sure there will a lot of talk about distributive generation, smart grids, regulations, and IT solutions. But as the head of the nation’s largest state-owned public power utility, with roughly 1,700 employees, I want to make sure that we have a meaningful dialogue about how our industry is going to address recruitment, employee engagement, and diversity.

Here’s an interesting fact: over 30% of utility employees are within five years of retirement. For decades, the energy industry benefited from a remarkably stable workforce. People entered the industry and stayed…and stayed. At the moment, one of the biggest challenges facing the industry is a wave of retirements, and then, attracting, motivating, and training their replacements. It’s time to re-think the way our industry has recruited and retained employees. We want the incoming generation of employees to be able to adapt as fast as technology demands.

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So far, we’ve seen increased turnover, particularly among engineers and other employees with specialized skills that are in high demand in every industry. When roughly 36% of the U.S. workforce is comprised of millennials, who are no longer seeking or expecting employment at one organization for their entire careers, we are looking at a huge cultural shift in the energy industry. We need to prepare ourselves for continued attrition by developing tools that will capture some of this knowledge as future employees leave after only a few years instead of a few decades.

We might debate about the speed and magnitude of change, but change is coming. Every energy sector is looking for ways to innovate and better integrate technology into their existing operations. To be clear, we cannot build a 21st century energy industry without a highly-skilled, motivated, and diverse work force. That’s why we’re developing more accurate ways at NYPA to project our future skills requirements, broaden our succession planning, and offer more training opportunities.

So, as an industry, we need to start figuring out ways to reinvent and reimagine the cultural paradigms we currently operate under in the energy industry – while providing the best value and outcome for our customers.

On June 16th, NYPA President Gil Quinones will speak at the NY Energy Week Opening Ceremony: An Address from the State. EnerKnol created New York Energy Week based on the company’s founding mission to fuel industry investment through information access and collaboration across all sectors of the diverse, and often fragmented, energy industry. For more information, visit www.nyenergyweek.com and http://www.energysolutionsforum.com/enerknol/.

Gil C. Quiniones (@GQEnergy) is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the New York Power Authority. Quiniones has served as Senior Vice President of Energy and Telecommunications for the New York City Economic Development Corporation during the Bloomberg Administration, and worked for Con Edison for 16 years.

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