Electricity Grids and Markets Bootcamp

Learn How US Electricity Grids and Markets Work

March 31-April 1, 2023

The Irving Institute's Electricity Grids and Markets Bootcamp is a fun, informative way to gain a better understanding of how our electricity grids and markets work, and what the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) — the agency that regulates them — does. Led by Jay Matson '91, Deputy Director of the Division of Investigations in the Office of Enforcement at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC);  Nancy Bowler '82,  FERC Branch Chief; and Rimvydas Baltaduonis, Associate Professor of Economics at Gettysburg College, this two-day intensive learning experience offers Dartmouth undergraduate students the opportunity to learn directly from the experts! You'll get an overview of electricity markets and FERC's role in regulating them; learn about the ways that companies bend or break the rules; and do a hands-on simulation that will give you a better sense of the complexity and challenges involved in running and regulating the grid system that is so critical to daily life in the United States.

The bootcamp takes place over two days: Friday evening, March 31 (4:15 - 7:30 p.m.) and Saturday, April 1 (8:30 a.m. - 3 p.m.) Friday night dinner and Saturday breakfast and lunch will be provided. A detailed schedule can be found below.

Students will be expected to complete some brief pre-reading and viewing about the electricity grid so that we can hit the ground running with Jay, Nancy, and Rim! 

Bootcamp Schedule


4:15 p.m:  Snacks available Grab a bite and get a jump on getting to know our instructors!

4:30 p.m.: Welcome and introductions. Introduce yourself and learn why Jay, Nancy, and Rim are spending their Friday and Saturday with us

5 p.m.: Test your knowledge! Interactive game reviewing key concepts and terms from pre-work assignments

6 p.m.: Dinner

6:45 p.m.:Introduction to electricity markets Build on your foundation in the physical dimension of electricity grids and start learning about the electricity marketplace.  What are electricity markets? How are they organized? What products are traded? What is FERC's role?

7:30 p.m.: End of Day 1


8:30 a.m.: Light breakfast and coffee available

9 a.m.:  Review key electricity market concepts. Interactive game to test your knowledge

9:45 a.m.: Expand your electricity market knowledge. Play the Power Grid game!

10:45 a.m.: Dr. Rimvydas Baltaduonis' Wholesale Power Markets Simulatio. A competitive economics experiment simulation engages participants in how markets operate from the perspective of traders in the electricity market. You'll work in a group to experience how wholesale power markets operate. The activity will be followed by a real-time discussion of everyone's results and how the simulation models real markets. 

Break for Lunch

2 p.m.:  Market Manipulation: Compliance and Enforcement. Now that you're an experienced grid operator, hear about how FERC surveils markets, investigates potential market manipulations, and enforces the regulations that keep the markets working smoothly.  Jay and Nancy will outline cases of market non-compliance and share insights from their careers at FERC.

3 p.m. :End of Day 2