Employee of the Month - May 2024

Hanh Tran, Facilities Project Supervisor
Housing and Residential Life

Awarded Thursday, May 9, 2024, via Zoom Virtual celebration. Hanh was joined by President Jane Close Conoley, Associate Vice President of Student Success and Engagement Daria Graham, Executive Director for Housing, Residential Life, and Auxiliaries Corry Colonna, Director of Housing Facilities George Vasquez, Associate Director of Housing Facilities David Scott, and numerous Housing and Residential Life and campus colleagues.

Hanh Tran began his career as a part-time Laborer, Custodian, and Maintenance Helper for campus housing in the Division of Student Affairs at the University of California, Irvine (UCI). While working, he continued his education by taking upper-division electrical engineering courses at CSU Fullerton in 1992. After finishing out his first year as a Helper, he was given the opportunity to become a Senior Maintenance Worker. Hanh spent six years at UCI and later moved to Cal Poly Pomona, continuing to serve students within the Division of Student Affairs.

Looking to work closer to home, Hanh accepted a position at CSULB as a Building Service Engineer in 2008. He later moved up to his current position as the Facilities Project Supervisor. Presently, his job involves servicing and maintaining heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC), plumbing, and kitchen equipment. His area of expertise is working with heating and water boilers. Hanh’s goal at CSULB has always been to provide the best service to students who are living in their home away from home.

Hanh has been recognized for his outstanding service to the department and the students living in campus housing. Hanh’s supervisor and the Associate Director of Housing Facilities, David Scott, expressed, “Hanh has successfully led several projects that were initiated by an emergency response requiring him to work long hours into the night and on the weekends. Mr. Tran has gone above and beyond to ensure our residents have the best experience while living on campus. Hanh's dedication to our residents is extraordinary and deserves recognition.”

Corry Colonna, the Executive Director for Housing, Residential Life, and Auxiliaries, shared a similar sentiment, expressing his appreciation for Hanh, saying, “Hahn has been a strong contributor to our operation for years and years. He never hesitates to assist us and give his expertise, especially in the area of HVAC to use to keep our building mechanical systems up and running. He would be a good candidate just based upon his regular work ethic and attention to care. However, he really went above and beyond a few weeks back when we had the storm.

“Many don't even know but the morning that the storms started there was a power outage at about 4 a.m. from Southern Edison. It took out the electrical of about 8 of our buildings and one of the dining halls. Once the power was restored to campus, we had several of our boilers that provide hot water or heat for the buildings that would not come back on. Hanh was on site immediately and trouble shooting.

“One boiler had its electrical panel fried by the electrical issue. We had to expedite the purchase and install a boiler. This is a huge project for our team to do anytime, but to do it so quickly took many, many hours of work. Several of our team members were on site helping, but Hanh is the person who lead the effort and coordinated the work. A couple days later we had second boiler go down, related to an issue with the gas supply. Again, Hanh came to campus after hours. He came to our rescue and that of our students. He troubleshooted to get things working for our team.

“Just because when it rains it pours, we then had a third boiler go down. The parts to repair it would take weeks to be fabricate and be sent to our campus. We did not have the time, so we again, expedited another boiler. That one would take still a bit of time, so Hanh reconstructed the part that we needed to get create a temporary fix while we waited for the new boiler. Heat and hot water were restored within a day.

“Hanh will start a project and stay on the work until it is fixed. He never complains. He never asks for anything but just the things we need to best support our student. He always has a positive can-do attitude. He is incredibly knowledgeable about HVAC/Mechanical systems and especially ours that are due for replacement. I truly don't know what we would do without him.”

George Vasquez, the Director for Housing Facilities, shared yet another story where Hanh played a vital role in assisting his team. George shared, “Hanh is a true professional, that goes the extra mile to make sure our students are always comfortable in the buildings they reside in. Hanh has been the one that has been called upon to fill in the gap time-after-time…Hanh has been called to resolve facilities issues that only with extensive knowledge of the institution and with his expertise can resolve. Never once has Hanh said no to the challenge.”

Hanh has lived in Midway City in Orange County for over fifteen years with his wife. When Hanh is not working, he enjoys going fishing and listening to music to relax.