Tickham Sananikone ’08
Coming to America: Tickham’s family emigrated from Laos when he was six years old.
Changing careers midstream: Tickham was an aircraft mechanic at Northwest Airlink until his mid-30s. “Once Northwest declared bankruptcy,” he says, “there was no way to move up.”
To research a career in healthcare, he volunteered at Fairview University Medical Center in Minneapolis. When he asked where his new co-workers trained for their healthcare careers, they pointed to a building out the window: “Right there, at St. Kate’s!”
First encounter: After his co-workers set him straight about men being welcome at St. Kate’s, he made a call to campus and soon applied. “The people were really friendly and I also had a good impression of St. Kate’s from former graduates.”
Why radiography? Long before becoming an airline mechanic, Tickham had accompanied his mother to get an MRI. “Since mom had limited English, I’d go with her to translate,” he says.
While at the clinic, he asked an MRI technician how he could get into the field. Tickham maintained an interest in the technology and plans to specialize in MRI.
His take on leadership: “Leadership to me means being a team player and taking initiative to help people who look up to me for guidance.”
Best thing about St. Kate’s: “I will always remember the friendship and bond with classmates and faculty that has formed over the last two years. St. Kate’s has a very welcoming atmosphere.”
New career confidence: “St. Kate’s has prepared me academically both in the classroom and through clinical experiences to meet the challenges of the real world.”