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Alumni Spotlight: Joshua Gandy '13

Meet Joshua Gandy '13: Ironman contestant, “The Power of a Growth Mindset” podcast co-founder, and former four-year collegiate track & field athlete now working within STEM to bridge the technology gap with communities of color.

Name: Joshua Gandy ‘13 

College/Major: North Carolina State University

  • B.S. Business Administration (‘17)

  • M.S. Analytics (‘18)

Current Occupation:

Manager (Operations & Analytics), Salesforce Innovation Center at Salesforce

Describe your career path. What do you have going on right now career wise?: 

After I graduated from North Carolina State University in 2018 with my M.S. in Analytics, I started my career with Ernst & Young (EY) as an analytics consultant. I spent a year and a half with the firm working on a few large projects with banks and insurance companies. Following that experience, I transitioned into the technology industry with Salesforce. 

My current role requires me to wear a number of hats. As an operations and analytics manager, my job is to ensure that our business continues to execute and deliver executive level meetings that drive revenue for the company. My team and I do that by leveraging statistics, analytics dashboards, and other reporting methods to drive insights to our day to day strategy. 

Being in technology and having come from a STEM background, my true passion lies in bridging the technology gap with communities of color. I also have the opportunity to ensure that I am a change agent that is growing and developing opportunities and resources to our underrepresented communities within Salesforce.

How did your education at Catholic Central prepare you for what you are doing today?

Catholic Central created a unique environment that I believe prepared me for college, my career, and life. 

The education I received from the school allowed me to excel in many of the courses that I took in college. While I had a number of teachers, faculty, and staff who had a tremendous impact on my education, till this day, one of my favorite teachers was Mr. Gismondi ‘00. Growing up, I struggled with reading comprehension, grammar, and writing. While Mr. Gismondi’s class was extremely challenging, his class was one that I looked forward to every chance I had. His class not only made me a better writer and thinker, but because he invested in my education, his class changed my trajectory in life (even if he may not know it). 

Catholic Central offers students a unique environment that will challenge you spiritually, emotionally, physically (sports), and mentally (education). For me, it wasn’t a cake walk; however, CC equipped me with the tools, knowledge, and resources to be an excellent writer and communicator which has helped me each and every day. The school has also developed me to be a leader and to continue to have a positive impact on those around me. I walk with confidence, lead with grace, and above all, keep faith as my center, all lessons taught from this institution.

I am thankful for the education and the opportunity to have attended Catholic Central. It’s one of those opportunities that you don’t appreciate until years after you’ve left. There are many teachers, coaches, and staff members who have helped mold my success. A few top of mind: Mr. Babicz ‘93, Coach Hancock ‘00, Coach Magni, Mr. Walters, Mrs. Storm, Mr. Bedard ‘96, Mrs. Zwick, Mr. Jones, Mr. Gismondi, and many others. 

What is the most important thing you learned while you were at Catholic Central?

One of the most important lessons that I learned while being a student at Catholic Central was how to be resilient in times of adversity. CC teaches you how to celebrate the wins (sports, grades, etc.) but also how to stand up when things also don’t go as planned (losing a state title, falling short on a test, etc). You’re surrounded with a lot of support and love from a very large family and that family helps you back on your feet to ensure you are successful. 

Describe Catholic Central in three words.

Dedicated: the faculty and staff are constantly striving to ensure that the men who walk those halls are becoming the best versions of themselves so that when they leave, they have all the tools and resources to be successful. On the flip side, any student coming to this school gets an opportunity to play a role in something larger than themselves, and excellence becomes ingrained in all that they do. 

Rewarding: you get what you put in from your experience. If you show up, get involved, ask questions, build the relationships, the rest takes care of itself. It’s hard to see the big picture while you are there, but all the lessons and experiences are things you will carry with you for the rest of your life. 

Spiritual: keeping faith at the center of all that we do 

Who influenced you most growing up?

My parents have been my biggest influencers while growing up and each has instilled different life lessons and teachings that continue to make an impact on who I am today. One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned from them is to always put my best foot forward and if I commit to something, make sure I do it to the best of my ability.

What is something people may not know about you? Interesting Facts?

  • In 2021, I co-founded a podcast with my best friend, Michael James, called “The Power of a Growth Mindset” where we aim to create a space for vital conversations on mental health, racial inequality, masculinity, and much more.

  • After completing four years of collegiate track and field at North Carolina State University, I traded in my track spikes and began competing in triathlons. My most recent accomplishment was finishing Ironman 140.6 Lake Placid on July 24, 2022. You can read about my experience here

  • Being in technology and having come from a STEM background, my true passion lies in bridging the technology gap with communities of color. I also have the opportunity to ensure that I am a change agent that is growing and developing opportunities and resources to our underrepresented communities within Salesforce. I’ve done this as:

    • A high school, college, and corporate mentor through many organizations with North Carolina State, Ernst & Young, and Salesforce. 

    • A BIPOC Alumni Co-Lead for North Carolina State’s Institute for Advanced Analytics where we specialize in developing a pipeline for underrepresented groups. 

    • A Salesforce ERG lead where we specialize in creating and providing employee resources and opportunities while also finding ways to give back to our communities. 

  • I had the opportunity to march in the New Year's Day parade in London with Catholic Central. That was my first time being outside the country. 

This article first appeared in Winter 2023 Aluminator, Vol. 72, No. 2, a Detroit Catholic Central Alumni Association publication.

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