Saturday, June 22, 2024

Alumni Spotlight with Ashley Nguyen

Where and when were you born?

I was born in St. John’s NL in 1991.

What is your current job and list some things you like about it? 

I am currently a Faculty Researcher in the Office of Applied Research at CNA. I really enjoy getting to work closely with our students on a wide range of industry projects. The nature of my job makes it so that every day is different! 

How does it relate to your diploma or certificate?

I have two diplomas from CNA: Tourism and Hospitality Management as well as Industrial Engineering Technology. I find myself constantly applying skills that I learned in both depending on the type of project I’m working on. 

What’s your favourite place in the world? 

My favourite place in the world is at home, on my back deck during the summer – if summer ever comes! But for a vacation, I enjoy Las Vegas. So much to do and so many great places to eat! 

Can you describe an experience that changed your life? 

Just this year I travelled to Vietnam with my father and my sister for the first time. It was life changing to experience the place where my father grew up. To be with him, meet my extended family, and get in touch with my culture. Coming back from that trip gave me a whole new perspective on life. 

What’s your favourite movie or book?

This is a very hard question because how could I possibly just pick one! Right now, my favorite book is called Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin. I think everyone should read it! 

 Is your current career path as you originally intended? 

In a lot of ways – yes! I knew that I always wanted to work with small businesses and solve problems. My current career path allows me to do that daily. Working with students was not necessarily something that I thought I would do this early into my career but it’s the most rewarding part of my work! 

What challenges did you face in launching your career?

It’s really hard to know exactly where you want to go when you finish school. I was very fortunate that my work terms in my Industrial Engineering Technology program allowed me to build my network in such a way that I had a job upon graduation. 

What advice would you give to your CNA first-year self?

Take every opportunity you have to build your network as early as possible – career fairs, lunch and learns, etc. You never know who your future employer might be so don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. 

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Ryanne McIsaac
Ryanne McIsaac
Ryanne is Editor of CNA Currents. Born and raised in Stephenville, NL, Ryanne moved back to Newfoundland after spending 16 years in Calgary, Alberta. Ryanne has a Journalism Diploma from College of the North Atlantic and a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Cape Breton University. She worked for many years as a reporter and freelance writer. She is happy to be back in her hometown and working for CNA.


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