Ryan Gardiner

Ryan Gardiner

Project: Drafting of the Smithsonian’s Metering Plan; exploring alternative options in SI’s utility billing software and data management analytics; and drafting of an Interagency Agreement between SI and the Federal Prisons Industry for a new solar installation project

School: The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University

Major: Security Studies and Environmental Resource Policy

As a prior Naval Officer, my professional experience has been diverse, ranging in areas from seamanship and navigation to having overall responsibility for the maintenance and operation of my ship’s entire engineering plant. Academically, the same can be said as my bachelor’s degree and current master’s curriculum differ greatly, from Middle-Eastern Studies to Environmental Policy. Similarly, interning at the Smithsonian Institution’s Office of Facilities Management and Reliability has presented a whole new educational experience and learning opportunities.

Intern Ryan Gardiner

From the moment I walked into the cavernous Natural History Museum’s front entrance, a new world of energy management and building sustainability awaited. From barely understanding how my own gas and electric bills were generated, I am now comparing utility billing software for future Smithsonian use; the learning curve has indeed been sharp. Luckily for me, the engineers of OFMR have been patient and willing teachers of their trade, guiding me along throughout each project and task. Whether the task involved breaking down a utility bill or accompanying the electrical engineers tasked with upgrading electrical meters, there has been ample support and opportunities to gain a better overall picture of energy management from the ground level. I will surely put to practice what I have and will learn this summer towards my last year of graduate course study, not to mention how I pay my utility bills. I have realized, through my time at OFMR, that the world of energy policy and sustainability practice are educationally far apart, however one cannot exist without the other and one has to look no further than here at Smithsonian Institution as a prime example of this.

More about my projects:

SI’s Metering Plan: Re-constructing SI’s Metering Plan involved paying close attention to federal guidance and the requirements set forth; researching into locations of existing electrical, steam, and natural gas meters and ascertaining needed upgrades of standard meters and areas for sub-metering. Additional research was directed towards developing a market comparison of utility billing and energy data management software to see which best applied to SI’s existing infrastructure, while utilizing mandated management systems set forth via federal guidance. This process is still on-going, as there exists a plethora of vendors and technologies.

SI/ Federal Prison Industries Interagency Agreement: Drafting of an Interagency Agreement between the SI and Federal Prison Industries to facilitate the construction and installation of solar panels at the Zoo has been completed; I am currently waiting for feedback from SI upper-level staff and Federal Prison Industries contract managers prior to submitting for final review. Drafting the IAG involved use of proper references and identification of key players and components from both the SI and Federal Prison Industries in order to properly list the responsibilities and goals for possible future installation.