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Class Notes

SAIT alumni Class Notes from around the world

Class Notes is your opportunity to reconnect with classmates and tell them what you've been up to since graduation.  Submit a note  and your update may be included in the next edtion of LINK magazine, your award-winning alumni publication. This fall 2018, we're featuring SAIT Trojans alumni in celebration of a new SAIT Trojans Athletics and Recreation logo being launched August 2018.

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Spring 2018 Class Notes

1980s

JAY WESTMAN (BSC '84, HOND '13)
The chair and CEO of Jayman BUILT, Jay Westman (BSC '84, HOND '13) received the prestigious 2017 Doc Seaman Individual Philanthropist Award at the Association of Fundraising Professionals Calgary and Area Chapter's Philanthropy Day luncheon last November. He was recognized for his support of the Resolve Campaign and the Mustard Seed, among others. He was also one of the Founding Builders who each gifted $1 million to the construction of SAIT's Trades and Technology Complex.

1990s

MARTIN SPRINGL (BA '98)
"I moved to Czech Republic after convocating from the University of Lethbridge in 2001. I spent five years as a procurement manager, travelling to the United States and China for business. I moved to the United Kingdom in 2009 and came back to Czech Republic at the end of 2009. I have been running my own business for the past eight years, providing translation and interpretation as well as project management and consulting for the auto and machinery industry."

2000s

NICHOLAS GNYRA (PT '00)
"After SAIT, I attended the University of Alberta and was offered a job with Encana as soon as I graduated. After five years in Calgary, I was assigned to Dallas, TX to help get the Haynesville Shale into development mode. Next I became responsible for all strategic planning in the Dallas office which connected me to an oil and gas engineering consulting firm called Netherland, Sewell and Associates, Inc., which is where I am now. We do a significant amount of work in Mexico, but also in South America, Asia and Australia."

MARK LITTLE (APT '00)
Last December, Mark was appointed chief operating officer of Suncor and is responsible for all operations and many corporate services at Suncor. Prior to this, Mark was president of Suncor's upstream organization, which included all of Suncor's operated and non-operated oil sands, in situ, conventional exploration and production assets worldwide. Mark is also the chair of the board of directors of Syncrude Canada and is a board member of Energy Safety Canada and Accenture Global Energy.

TARIK ALSAI (CET '01, APT '03)
"After graduating, I worked for four years as a production engineer with Nexen in Yemen, then was transferred to Calgary to work as a reservoir engineer for another four years. I also obtained my Master of Science in Petroleum Engineering from Herriot-Watt University and a P.Eng status with APEGA. I left Nexen and joined Canadian Natural Resources Limited for less than one year. In 2012, I joined Total, where I started my journey in Dubai for approximately five years. I'm currently the reservoir manager for Total in Nigeria, looking after all assets that are operated by others."

JASON BOYD (CKP '01)
Jason has been honoured with the 2017 Distinguished Instructor Award from the Alberta Colleges & Institutes Faculties Association. He is an instructor in SAIT's Professional Cooking program and is the first SAIT instructor to receive this prestigious award.

NORBERTO FLORES (AXT '01)
Norberto worked at Western Avionics in Calgary for six years and in Switzerland before moving back to Calgary. He started his contracting job at Bombardier Aerospace, then moved to Seattle to work on the Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ) - Japan's first commercial passenger jet - as an instrumentation engineer.

DUKWON CHO (ITP '03)
"I have been working in the network engineering field in Korea since 2004. Currently I am working for Cisco Systems Korea as a systems engineer and I am in charge of EN solutions such as software-defined access (SDA) and software defined wide area network (SD-WAN)."

TANYA MELL (LA '03)
"After graduation, I worked at Burnet, Duckworth and Palmer while attending the University of Calgary where I earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Law and Society. After earning my undergraduate degree, I moved to Denver and earned a MBA at the University of Colorado. I'm now working for a construction and engineering consulting firm in Denver."

ZAC TROLLEY (ENT '04)
Zac was selected by International Space University as the crew engineer for the Mars Desert Research Station, a space analog facility in Utah owned by the Mars Society that supports Earth-based research in pursuit of the technology, operations and science required for human space exploration. Trolley and five other members of MDRS Crew 188 spent two successful weeks on the Mars simulation mission.CRAIG

CRAIG SNIDER (BA '05)
"I completed my degree with the University of Lethbridge, graduating in 2007, then departed for London to work in the finance industry. Luckily I landed a good job because, months later, Lehman Brothers collapsed. I went on to work at the Royal Bank of Scotland and spent three years as part of their corporate banking team. In 2011, I transitioned into FinTech, working for a few startups. I've been involved in creating new alternative lenders and even a new bank. Two years ago, I married a Scottish girl and we're planning to return
to Canada."

JULIE (BOYGA) WOOD (AIM '06)
"I was the first AIM graduate to complete the Bachelor of Commerce in Entrepreneurial Management with Royal Roads University. Now, I'm finishing my Master of Innovation, Strategy and Entrepreneurship from Grenoble Ecole de Management while living in Montpellier, France and working in a French tech start-up. Having spent my entire career in telecom and technology, the skills I learned in the AIM program have served me far, far more than I would have ever thought. I still have fond memories of instructors like Wendy, Phil and Angela, and the skills they imparted upon me."

STEVE ZIEHR (CVT '07)
Steve's diploma led him to work for the largest supplier of waterslides and rides in the world. His travels took him across the U.S., to Europe, the Middle East and Southeast Asia with projects in Malaysia, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Northern China. He now has two companies: one provides global consulting on assisting persons with disabilities to secure meaningful work (paraworkforce.com); the other assists the top talent he's met in his travels come to Canada for work opportunities and consults with architecture, engineering and construction companies to improve their workforce programs (buildxquality.com).

IVÁN BORGES (RTBN '08)
"I've been working mostly as a reporter. I worked in Calgary as an audio editor at 660 News, then returned to Mexico in 2010 and worked in TV and media. Today I am the owner of Puebla News, the only website in English in Puebla City, my hometown. I also work as a TV reporter for one of Mexico's biggest stations, TV Azteca. I am a proud SAIT graduate and thank all my classmates, especially Janelle Lane, Sarah Offin, Lauren Paullen, Steve Mclean and teachers Richard Stroobant, Steve Olsen, Shelly and Shane who helped me be who I am now."

BRANDON DUCHARME (IIET '08)
"I am living and working in Queenstown, New Zealand for Opus International Consultants Ltd. as a senior project manager involved in municipal infrastructure transportation and water engineering projects. Queenstown is a great place to live and work, and the entire region is experiencing immense growth in water and transportation infrastructures due to the increasing tourism and overall demand to be in Queenstown. One of the most surprising realizations I've had since being in New Zealand is how Canadian and Kiwi cultures are so similar yet so far away. Find me on LinkedIn: linkedin.com/in/brancouver/"

SPENCER LINDSKOOG (AMWP '08, APM '14)
"During my apprenticeship, I worked for an oilfield equipment manufacturer and commissioned and repaired oilfield equipment in Alberta, North America and overseas. After completing the program, I was offered a rotational position to lead maintenance and commissioning of rigs in the Sultanate of Oman. While on rotation, I started my Applied Business certificate, again at SAIT, and obtained my Blue Seal designation. Next I started as service quality supervisor for a global service provider. In 2016, I was offered the operations management position and my wife, two kids and I moved to the Sultanate full-time. I will always remain a proud, Blue and Red Seal Journeyman Millwright."

2010s

ANESSA MOHAMMED (TVT '11)
"I graduated from SAIT's TVT program as an international student from Trinidad and Tobago. I remained in Calgary having obtained a post-graduate work permit; however, upon the expiration of the work permit in August 2014 I was required to return home to Trinidad. I was able to have my SAIT TVT diploma accredited locally after a bit of difficulty but I since have not been able to find suitable employment within my field of study. I do miss Calgary and Canada and would like to return someday if given the opportunity."

RON MONTGOMERY (TVT '12)
"After graduating, I packed up my life and moved to Christchurch, New Zealand. I started working with House of Travel and have achieved a lot of success including being awarded the coveted Rookie of the Year award in 2014. I am currently in the process of launching my own escorted touring company with the assistance of my employer — so big things ahead, I hope."

KAT HASSARD (APBP '13)
SAIT pipe trade instructor Kat Hassard was interviewed by fellow pipe trade instructor Tim Carson of the British Columbia Institute of Technology for his podcast The Guild, which focuses on life and leadership in the trades.

ROB SHIELDS (ARFP '15)
"After completing my apprenticeship program, I worked for a couple of years and I have since moved to Spain with my wife and daughter. Currently I am working as a full-time father, raising my daughter and enjoying the chance to see her develop and grow while at the same time taking classes in the Catalan language to help my integration into this new culture."

MIGUEL BRANCO (FVP '17)
"Since graduating, I've moved to Los Angeles to take a job offer as a trailer editor. I've since worked on projects for HBO, Netflix and 20th Century Fox."

RUTGER VAN DORP (HMGT '17)
"My first job after graduation was working as a flight attendant for a low-cost carrier. In 2017 I got the job as a flight attendant for KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. I apply many of the skills that I learned in hospitality management to the job I have today."

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