Helping current and future system operators improve or reinforce their knowledge of system operations are the reasons that Nancy DeLeon of SOS Intl is a trainer. DeLeon develops online training, which enables training to be possible when it might not otherwise be, thereby reaching more system operators.
“System operators across North America are in a control room, 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, monitoring the power system and ensuring that the high-voltage interconnected system is reliable and available to deliver electricity to the end-users,” DeLeon said. “We have come to depend on this supply of electricity for our comfort, conveniences, and in some instances our lives.”
DeLeon is a NERC Certified System Operator with 24 years of energy industry experience that provides insight into the planning and organizing of training and compliance consulting for SOS. She is one of the lead analysts for the design, delivery, and implementation of training to support education and compliance needs of customers. She manages development of service and product lines for training/consulting services related to PER-005 and training consulting.
She started out at Duke Energy, holding positions of progressive responsibility, including: System Operator, Technical Specialist, Reliability Operator, Lead System Coordinator, and Technical Trainer.
“When I was a trainer for a large utility, I trained on basic power system fundamentals, advance simulations and restoration drills,” DeLeon said. As an SOS trainer, she also teaches system operator certification courses, effective communications for operations, contingency analysis courses, and continuing education courses, such as voltage control.
Her current position as a professional technical trainer enables her to be exposed to different business models. Each is designed to ensure reliable system operations while meeting the business needs of the corporations. This exposure to a variety of processes and procedures is taken into account when presenting a course or training session. Her past experience as a system operator for a large utility also greatly enhances her ability to relate to the students in the classroom or online.
When she first started her career at Duke, she supported the operations group with short-time planning. At that point, she decided she wanted to understand and experience real-time operations. “The real-time system operation position is a very intriguing, prestigious and challenging position.”
As a trainer and a system operator, she said she has learned a couple of old clichés that are true and part of her philosophy:
- There is never a stupid question: If there is confusion or conflict in your mind, you must clear it up to enable understanding and learning to take place.
- Knowledge is power: There is power in understanding and in being empowered to help others to learn. This applies to any career field.
When DeLeon is not teaching system operators, she clears her mindby being outdoors. “It helps me and reminds me that we (human race) are trying to capture and recreate forces of nature. Formulas are just mathematical ways to explain relationships and cause and effect. Mostly, being outdoors is an escape of the modern (electricity demanding) world,” she said.