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Career Profile

Hubert Tong

Deputy Fleet Technical Officer, Canadian Fleet Atlantic
Royal Canadian Navy
Hubert Tong | Officier technique adjoint de la flotte
Hubert Tong | Officier technique adjoint de la flotte
Location Now
Education Pathway

Hubert Tong is the Deputy Fleet Technical Officer, Canadian Fleet Atlantic for the Royal Canadian Navy.

About me

I was born/grew up in: I was born in Sarawak, Malaysia.  I came to Canada in the 1990s and grew up in Toronto, Ontario

I now live in: Halifax, Nova Scotia

I completed my training/education at: Bachelor of Engineering (Electrical), Ryerson University, Toronto

What I do at work

In my current role, I oversee the training of junior Naval Technical Officers (NTOs) in the fleet. I also assist other NTOs employed on the East Coast with personnel management.

In order to do this, I rely upon my previous experience as a Combat Systems Engineering Officer (CSEO) and work alongside my counterpart, the Marine Systems Engineering Officer (MSEO). Between our two departments, we are responsible for all aspects of the technical readiness on board the ship. Part of my duties as the CSEO include teaching, mentoring and guiding junior members of my CSE department in their training as they work towards their qualifications.

The main STEM skills that enabled me to serve as the CSEO are the knowledge and skillsets from my Degree in Electrical Engineering. Having a good academic grounding in STEM is critical to understanding how all the fitted Combat Systems on board a warship came together as a suite. This understanding in turn informs how I manage my team and resources. I have to make sure we are ready for a range of operations up to and including combat.

My career path is

This is not at all what I thought I would be doing when I was in high school. I was never interested in the military as a full-time career until after I had completed my undergraduate degree. When I completed my studies at Ryerson University, I learned that many internship-engineering jobs in the private industry had very low pay. Most had no benefits and offered little opportunity to travel. I visited a recruiting centre and I found high pay, great benefits and plenty of opportunities to travel abroad in the RCN. I could not have found a better employer!

I have had many unusual twists and turns in my career. The best, and most memorable, was an unexpected posting where I got to work with the U.S. Military for two years. With help from mentors and colleagues, I have found ways to adapt and overcome many other challenges since. You can be that person who pays to hear a great story about somebody's career, or you can be that person who does the story telling. I decided to take the plunge, live the adventure rather than hear about it. I can't imagine what else I would do that is better than this.

I am motivated by

Helping other people succeed is the greatest personal reward in my work. No job in the RCN succeeds on the efforts of just one person. In order to form and sustain an effective team, you have to take care of each other.  Teaching, mentoring and enabling junior personnel and colleagues to accomplish their goals is one of the two best parts of my job.  Learning from, and working with, great leaders is the other best part of my job.  We each change over to a different job every two to four years. Because of this, we are a team of very capable and very adaptable people.  Despite my seniority and experience at this stage in my career, I am still constantly learning and doing new things.  I would not be able to take on all these constant new challenges successfully without great leaders and mentors enabling me.

How I affect peoples’ lives

A modern warship is one of the most complex pieces of machinery ever built. An understanding of how all the systems and equipment work together is critical. I have an incredible team of people working for me. In turn, I work to support a team of people above and around me to make sure these warships are maintained to the highest standards possible.  These warships are used in domestic and international operations in support of Canada's interests and in support of Canada's allies. This lets me know that my job as an engineer, as a Naval Technical Officer, is relevant.

Outside of work I

Playing StarCraft 2, Call of Duty Infinite Warfare and Civilization VI; following professional gaming circuits; painting WarMachine miniatures; reading (both fiction and non-fiction); swimming; playing with my four cats; indy comic books; Legos; eating-out with friends & colleagues.

My advice to others

An engineering career in the RCN could be for you if you want to be involved in complex technical work in an organization that is constantly striving to enable future successes for Canada and for her allies. You will have opportunity for further education and professional growth, plus opportunities to travel abroad. I think an engineering career in the RCN is awesome! You’ll never look back once you've started this journey.

When I was a student, I enjoyed:
  • Business & Economics
  • Geography
  • Math
  • Music
  • Science
  • Technology
When I was a student, I would have described myself as someone who:
  • Brought people together
  • Liked helping people
  • Organized activities for my friends
  • Played on a sports team
  • Liked being given free range to explore my ideas
  • Engaged in volunteer activities
  • Liked reading
  • Played video games
  • Felt great satisfaction in getting good grades
  • Wasn’t sure what I wanted to do
  • Learned best “by doing”
  • Liked to design or build things

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