Bachelor of Applied Science (BASc) 1995
Gustavo Ramos was born near Sao Paulo but has had experiences in Canada that go well beyond what most visitors to this country have. Not only did he go to U of T for four years, getting his BASc in mechanical engineering, but at 15 he moved on his own from Brazil to live with a family in Saskatoon. His father had business contacts in Canada and they agreed it would be a great adventure for him to live here.
After high school in Saskatoon, Ramos could have chosen McGill or the University of British Columbia to further his education, but there were "two major things that drew me to U of T. Firstly, the academic excellence, and secondly, the multicultural aspect, the vibrancy of the university and the city. It had a lot of resonance for me."
"U of T allows you to feel welcomed, accepted in an environment that allows you to be yourself. It allows you to get a real sense of the world."
Ramos, President and CEO of Mectron-Engenharia in Sao Paulo, says he met his best friend while attending U of T and his other closest friend also went to the university at the same time. One of his friends is from Iran and lives in northern Ontario. "I was exposed to people I never would have met in Brazil. People from China, Iran, Japan. I learned about their histories and experiences. It was so enriching to know them."
If he could advise prospective students at U of T, he would say they would not only get "the skills necessary to face professional challenges" but be imbued with a "cultural awareness of the world."
Ramos's company makes equipment for both the military and private sector, including aircraft and equipment. He has helped organize study groups from U of T's Rotman School of Management and facilitated U of T student tours of his company and others in Sao Paulo.
He hopes for a return visit to Toronto with his wife Paula and daughters Sofia and Olivia.
Published Nov. 28, 2013