University of Toronto Magazine University of Toronto Magazine
Photo by Sida Ren.
Photo by Sida Ren

A Reunion to Remember

Ann Nguyen and Paul Hiscock, two engineers from different worlds, decide to put a ring on it

Ann (BASc 1986): I’m a boat person from Vietnam. When the Communists took over the South, they sent my father to a re-education camp for 13 years and my mother had no job. My mother paid to send my siblings and me away on a little boat when I was 15, and I ended up in a refugee camp in Indonesia. I came to Canada and I quickly realized that I would need an education to get ahead so I went to U of T. When I finished university and got my very first job, I bought a class ring to represent my hard work. I always planned on giving it to someone truly special in my life, but I never felt a strong enough connection to offer anyone the ring. Then I met Paul again at our 25-year class reunion. He’s such a gentleman, and he does everything straight from his heart. I offered him the ring, and he was thrilled to accept it. He tells everyone about it. I realize now that he’s the only one who can wear it.

Paul (BASc 1986): I didn’t really know Ann at university. She was very studious back then, and I just wanted to pass and get my degree. She was always sitting in the front of the class and I was always sitting in the back. Unlike her, I was in a position to take things for granted – but I did go on to use my engineering degree to open my own consulting company. When I saw Ann again at our reunion on April 8, 2011, I fell in love with her right away. I was living in Newfoundland, but a month later, I came to Toronto and we started dating then. I moved here to be with her a year later. She really supports me. I’m very proud of her and what she’s done with her life. We’re getting married on September 20, which is also my 50th birthday.

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