From the time she set foot on the St. Thomas campus, Tommie Award finalist Nguyen “Lucky” Phan ’24 made a point to be actively involved in the university community. She has served as president of ASIA Club, vice president of Undergraduate Business Council and as the international students’ representative in Undergraduate Student Government.
“Lucky represents the highest ideals of St. Thomas in scholarship, leadership and campus involvement on so many levels. Having spent her first year at St. Thomas at home in Vietnam because of COVID, she arrived on campus as a sophomore and engaged fiercely,” Opus College of Business clinical faculty member Mike Porter, one of her Tommie Award nominators, said. “Having had her as a student, I can attest to her deep commitment to delivering high-quality thought and effort on every assignment, regardless of difficulty or point value.”
With the final Tommie Award voting taking place Feb. 6-8, here are highlights from Phan’s conversation with the Newsroom.
What has your experience been as an international student?
My background as an international student has given me the motivation to build meaningful connections and create an inclusive community at St. Thomas. As a dedicated and driven student, I have maintained a high GPA and been on the dean’s list every semester, which reflects my consistent academic excellence and time management. I connected with my peers, staff and faculty in various disciplines, whether through classwork or on-campus jobs.
I joined Mike Porter’s family in the Office of International Students and Scholars Friendship Family program. It was a great fit, as I’m majoring in operations and supply chain management with a concentration in business analytics.
His family took me sledding for the first time in my life. It was really steep and I was so scared, but I enjoyed it.
How is your senior year going?
It’s been amazing. My classes are only ones that I like, so I love putting in the time. With ASIA Club, its biggest event of the year has taken place, so I can focus on my homework.
How do you balance all your activities with your classes and homework?
Being able to live on campus helps with my time management, since I don’t have to worry about food and rest. I schedule my days for one hour at a time – one hour for homework, one hour for a club, etc. In addition, our club meetings are during convo hour.
I don’t take on any responsibilities that I can’t follow through on, as I don’t want to disappoint others.
What are you looking forward to after graduation?
I will be working as a supply chain analyst at Andersen Corporation after graduation. I’m very excited to start working with them because the people are nice. I’m looking forward to working in the real world and applying the knowledge that I learned at St. Thomas.
I want to be in Minnesota, so this is a dream come true. My sister, Happy, attends St. Thomas as well. I really don’t want to leave her alone.
What advice would you give to students looking to make an impact?
Try to be active in school activities, because that’s where you find many connections and encounter meaningful conversations. I'm involved in club activities and councils. I try different positions and new experiences in various areas to see where I fit, and then I help to build a community there.
I encourage people to try as many new experiences as they can until they find what they love to do the most.