Hana Nguyenky – “Collector of Knowledge”

For the Emerge AEC Launch Party, hosted virtually in May 2022, we heard from the Emerge AEC team about their paths into AEC and what they’ve learned along the way. For Julie, we learned about the literal and metaphorical tools one should have in their tool bag, along with some tips on the best ways to use them. For Caitlin, she explained the idea of “creating your own luck” with five tips to create your own successful career.

In this post, we’re highlighting Hana’s presentation and how her role as a “Collector of Knowledge” has nurtured her love of learning. Read more below:


Emerge AEC is one intersection of Hana’s many interests.

Her greatest passion is knowledge. She likes learning and knowing stuff. As it relates to her career, she likes learning about people, their roles, and what they did to get to where they are. Being involved with Emerge AEC allows for her to satisfy this curiosity, and she hopes to use the platform Emerge AEC provides to share the knowledge that’s gathered from people of today with other people of the present, and the people of generations to come.

Emerge AEC today is working to establish itself as a resource for people of all experience levels or who are emerging in their career paths by helping to connect them with professional organizations, communities, and events.

Encourage. Engage. Experience.

Emerge AEC is here to give support and confidence to those looking to receive it by being a tool for your growth. We’re also happy to share encounters, observations, and practices with you.


We are all individuals of various personal experiences, characteristics, and knowledge. Together, individuals form an inter-relational whole. A whole that forms and reforms with the efforts and involvement of all the individuals within. Hana’s interest lies within the potential of those interactions and intersections where people meet. Everyone has a story, some multiple stories. Her role is to collect those stories and make them accessible for future generations to come.

The graphic above is of the Tree of Life, a symbol that spans across the world, from the Celts to the Mayans, the Norse People to the Buddhists. It’s representative of the interconnected nature of all things; what we are rooted in and what we are reaching for; the cycles of life’s beginning, end, and renewal; and our personal development. We grow as trees do, seeking out life’s necessities; our strength, wisdom, and experiences developing in unique ways as we adapt to the external and internal forces we meet along the way.


Seeking Out the Needs of Life

In Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, the bottom-most basic needs are physiological. They include breathable air, drinkable water, food, sleep, and shelter. Shelter is the physical result of the AECO industry services. The industry is dependent upon patronage. The industry is dependent upon commodifying a basic human need. This is important in the context of this hierarchy because each need can only be met if the prior need has been satisfied. If we have commodified the basic need for shelter, that means we are commodifying safety, belonging and love, esteem, and self-actualization. These needs are for all humans. The difference lies in the level of obtainment and value individuals place upon each need.


Individualized Value

We see quotes and assume there is importance, that they are words of wisdom. Someone – somewhere – has read it and/or heard it, then placed value upon the words and/or individual they came from. We, as the public audience, in turn consider it important and wise, because we also believe in its assumed value. Therefore, we are inspired by perceived value, and not wisdom.

Belief and value are dependent upon the individuals. But like some quotes that have survived decades and centuries of citation, some beliefs and values are consistently and universally shared. We, as individuals, share in the belief and assumptions of values that together form a larger entity.


Values Forming a Shared Entity…

… be it community, culture, society, etc.

So, prompt for the reader to muse on, what are the shared values of the AECO industry? What can we do to incite more shared values upon others with our work and services? How do we inspire others, so that they too participate in these shared entities? The entity of Hana’s particular focus is knowledge. Shared values contribute to shared knowledge. Knowledge that when taken care of, to obtain and preserve, can become accessible for those who seek it.


Seeking Knowledge

There’s a great history of obtaining knowledge, creating monuments for the containment of knowledge, and losing knowledge. One that has proven itself non-linear and repetitive. The graphic above is a highly condensed simplification of that history. A large and often oversimplified part in that history is access. Who are the ones using the knowledge? How did they discover its existence and location? Why were they seeking it? What are the effects of their knowledge?

Knowledge is an ability. It’s amazing how much the ability of knowledge goes unchecked and overlooked, and how much knowledge we take for granted. It’s amazing how much knowledge we fear and deny.


Fear leads to action, reaction, and inaction. It leads to discussions on tolerance and acceptance. Tolerance is temporary, a state of being, a moment in time. Acceptance from tolerance lingers in the form of awareness. Awareness precedes accessibility. Actions and discussions for acceptance require people to have some level of awareness, to then access what’s available to them.

People don’t know what they don’t know. Innovation is constantly being pursued, but it’s not always available where it needs to be. That knowledge is limited by awareness. A limitation we have accepted. Acceptance, awareness, and accessibility are abilities derived from knowledge.


The greatest gift Hana has ever received is her love of reading.

That love has given her the ability to be aware. It has nurtured her curiosities and satisfied them in turn. From curiosity to investigation, from obtainment to awareness, from awareness to desire, and desire to fulfillment. That is the path reading has continually laid down for her to travel. It’s one of no ending and no demand for completion. One that she wants to share with others.


We define knowledge and knowledge, in turn, defines us.

When we leave, we take more with us, and leave behind more than we realize. Hana doesn’t want to contribute to further loss of knowledge. She wants to leave behind accessible knowledge for future generations. That endeavor is only a part of her story, but one of great passion and pride. That is why she defines herself as a ‘Collector of Knowledge.’


Emerge AEC is a platform for resource sharing and professional development. Hana will contribute to this community’s growth by continuing to collect and share stories.

The stories EAEC has collected so far have informed our blog posts, and will continue to help develop future posts. If you or anyone you know would like to share a story with us, please reach out and let us know. We’d love to add it to our collection.

With that, thanks for reading this blog post on what being a ‘Collector of Knowledge’ is to Hana.

Read more about Hana on her About Me page here.

Connect with her on LinkedIn here.

 Notice: This post is the sole expression of a voluntary and free professional resource. It’s not to be attributed to any other entity, unless expressly stated otherwise.

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