Brynn Nguyen, '24 BSB, receives the 2024 Tomato Can Loving Cup Award

Brynn Nguyen wins 2024 Tomato Can Loving Cup Award

Monday, May 13, 2024

Brynn Nguyen, '24 BSB, receives the 2024 Tomato Can Loving Cup Award
Assistant Dean of the Undergraduate Program Nick Wallace (left) presents the 2024 Tomato Can Loving Cup Award to Brynn Nguyen, '24 BSB.

Known for her dedication to mentorship, leadership, and community service, Brynn Nguyen, ’24 BSB, is the winner of the 2024 Tomato Can Loving Cup Award, the most prestigious award the Carlson School of Management bestows on an undergraduate student.

She received this honor as part of the undergraduate commencement ceremony on May 13.

“It feels so amazing,” Nguyen said after the ceremony. “I obviously knew that I was nominated, but all the people I’ve had classes with are just so amazing. Just to know that I could be amongst them and that I could get chosen out of everyone, it just feels so cool. And then to have my family here from Vietnam and everything, and to see the commencement, it feels really nice.”

As a finance major and leadership minor graduating with a 3.94 GPA, Nguyen exemplifies academic excellence. But beyond that, she’s stood out for her deep commitment to mentorship and community outreach. She’s served as a Carlson School Emerging Leaders of Color (ELOC) Mentor, a Carlson Outreach Ambassador (OA), and a UMN First Year Leadership Institute (FYLI) Mentor.

Through her work with ELOC and OA, she mentored high school and middle school students respectively, helping them prepare for college. With FYLI, Nguyen mentored first-year students from across the University of Minnesota. In 2023, she received the President’s Student Leadership & Service Award, which recognizes the accomplishments and contributions of outstanding student leaders at the University.

“While [a passion for learning] is evident through my examples of scholarship, I learn even more while engaging in service and leadership,” Nguyen wrote in her nomination materials for the Tomato Can Loving Cup Award. “I started my roles by backing each interaction with a student with the intention of teaching or mentoring them, but it turns out that they’re teaching me how to be a more empathetic, engaging, and fair-minded leader.”

In addition to her mentorship efforts, Nguyen served as Marketing Coordinator for the Vietnamese Student Association’s 2022 Tết show, engaged with prospective students and their families as a Carlson School Ambassador, and worked in the Leadership Minor office.

A 2022–24 Ecolab Sustainability Scholar, Nguyen was on the Dean’s List for all her semesters at the Carlson School and graduated with High Distinction. She participated in the 2022 Accenture Innovation Challenge, where her team earned a top-three ranking in the Midwest. Nguyen also interned at Procter & Gamble and Straumann Group.

As part of receiving the Tomato Can Loving Cup Award, Nguyen is eligible for a half-tuition scholarship to the Carlson School Full-Time MBA program following two years of professional work experience.

The oldest award given to students by the Carlson School, Tomato Can Loving Cup’s history dates to 1929 when students asked Dean Russell Stevenson to present an outstanding service award to a senior. Henry Hilton, ’29 BSB, volunteered to make the trophy that would be presented to the winner. As a joke, he fashioned a trophy from a tomato soup can nailed to a wooden candlestick that belonged to his mother. To Hilton’s surprise, Stevenson presented him with his own creation, which became known as the Tomato Can Loving Cup Award. The increasingly rickety soup can is given each year.