Sunday, July 14, 2024

SubC Imaging’s ‘seacret’ weapons

CNA grads use skillsets for under-the-sea exploration

Ryan at Oceans in Action 2022 in Mississippi.

SubC imaging has a tremendous pool of talent in its midst when it comes to College of the North Atlantic (CNA) graduates.

Founded by two CNA graduates, Chad Collett (Chief Technology Officer) and Adam Rowe (Vice-President and Co-owner), SubC’s head office is located in Clarenville and it currently employs 12 college alumni hailing from a myriad of technical programs. SubC Imaging creates technologically-advanced subsea imaging equipment and software.

Ryan Gravelle, Technical Sales Specialist, graduated from the Industrial Engineering Technologist program at CNA in 2018.

“I work with international clients to ensure that SubC provides the correct subsea solution that meets all of their project needs. Examples of project applications that I deal with are subsea sensors for ROVs (remotely operated vehicles), AUVs (autonomous underwater vehicles), observatories, custom subsea systems, and custom software needs. The current industries I deal with are offshore energy, marine science, defense, deep sea exploration, and aquaculture.”

He says it was a presentation during his time at CNA that led him to apply for this innovative local company.

“I learned about SubC in my last semester at CNA,” recalled Gravelle. “Adam Rowe came in to complete a presentation on the company and how students from CNA could get into the tech industry. This really sparked an interest to a point where I ended up applying to SubC once they had an opening.”

Gravelle says he looks back at his time at CNA fondly.

“I will never forget my time at CNA,” he said. “I really enjoyed creating long-lasting friendships with classmates and instructors. CNA has the ability to teach new skills each and every day that will help young people, like myself, move forward professionally in my industry.”

A key factor to his success, adds Gravelle, was the work terms.

“CNA helped me prepare for the real world by providing me with multiple work terms that were able to open the door for new opportunities after graduation. Without these work terms, I would not be where I am today in my professional career. Not only did these work terms provide me with professionalism, but they also supported me financially through school as we were able to get paid for the majority of these work terms,” he said, adding that having instructors who actually worked in the industries beforehand gave him a much better insight into what to expect in the real work environment.

Exploring your passions

Katie and one of her instructors, Ray Fennelly, at CNA’s cap and gown ceremony in 2017

Katie Stoodley, Graphic Designer at SubC Imaging, echoes the importance of hands-on experience.

“The instructors were all incredibly resourceful and had ‘real-world’ knowledge that helped us prepare for a career in the industry,” she said. “We had the opportunity to work with real clients, have real deadlines, and receive feedback from them on our ideas and designs.”

Stoodley says she started working with SubC right out of college and has since been able to expand her knowledge base.

“I spend my days creating videos, advertisements, social media graphics and all other print and digital documents,” she said. “I’ve grown so much as a designer since I started. I’ve had the opportunity to branch out and learn more about marketing, CSS coding, and so much more.”

She would encourage others to follow their dreams.

“There are endless possibilities for me to grow and enhance my skillset while also getting to work with such ground-breaking technology every single day,” she said. “Getting to work with clients, agents and partners all over the world has been one of my favourite parts of my job so far. I’ve met so many interesting people and have heard so many incredible stories from their expeditions and research.”

Anh Cao, Electrical Engineering Technologist with SubC, agrees that CNA played a big role in his current success.

“When I was at CNA, I was doing Electronics Engineering Technology in the Biomedical program. I was doing that program just to expand my engineering background so I could work in different fields. I really enjoy my time there as there were some really motivating instructors that basically sparked my interest in entrepreneurship.”

Originally from Vietnam, Cao spent some time in the USA before making his way to Newfoundland and Labrador.

“I’ve been living abroad for a while now. I spent eight years in California then moved here. Life here is, of course, much different from my hometown and California. It’s more quiet and life here is much slower than other places I’ve been. Adjustment to life here was not that difficult for me as I’m used to living abroad now. I enjoy life here so far.”

Cao says he would encourage students to make the most of their time at CNA.

“CNA provides lots of opportunities for students to explore beyond their current curriculum. So, I’d suggest students to explore extra activities besides the regular program.”

To learn more about SubC Imaging, visit

For more information about CNA programs, visit

Anh during TCS sea trials in Terra Nova
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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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