Ryan Holland, from grad student to employee

Posted: July 2, 2014 - 1:47pm

Ryan Holland is another new Y‑12 employee who took advantage of the MBA Career Advantage Program while a student at the University of Tennessee. The program pays partial tuition and provides valuable on-site learning experience.

During his graduate assistantship, Holland worked mainly with Facilities, Infrastructure and Services' Katie Roberts (a former program participant herself) when Y‑12's taxi service was just getting started. His assignment was to gather and analyze data-such as the most requested routes and how long trips took — to provide the most effective service. "It helped me get used to viewing real-world data and performing analysis on it," he said. "I learned techniques of dealing with data in the classroom and then was able to apply those techniques on data that wasn't clean and from a text book."

After graduating in December 2012, he transitioned to a full-time position in Safeguards, Security, and Emergency Services. There, his B.S. in math and M.S. in business analytics provide an excellent fit for the Inventory Analysis Group because of its reliance on statistical analysis for calculating the amount of nuclear material on hand. Holland said what he does is "arrive at control limits from uncertainties." For example, there are inherent uncertainties in measuring very small (gram-sized) quantities of material. His task is to understand measurement methods and determine if differences need investigation.

"The good thing about Ryan's education in business analytics is its practical applications," said Rachel Hayes of SS&ES. "He has already been able to help us in a variety of projects."