Meet The Team: Alan De Castro, Quality Assurance Team Lead
May 12, 2023
Tell us a little about yourself, Alan!
I’m a first-generation Filipino, born and raised in Halifax NS, and a Dalhousie University grad. Everything I enjoy centres around family, community, connection, giving back, and living life! I have an amazing wife and two kids, 3 sisters, wonderful parents, and an endless number of extended family around the world (which even makes travel that much better!). I love traveling the world and meeting interesting people, which works well because I’m a big foodie and more often than not you’ll catch me talking about (or partaking in!) amazing food/drink experiences 😀.
I’m well into the fitness industry where I’ve participated in many competitive sports growing up, ice hockey being the primary one that I still play. A workout fanatic and now a fitness coach at a gym, giving back my experiences to help everyone with their own journeys. Outside of this, just living the dream as superdad and superhusband!
How did you first get into quality assurance?
Funny story here. At first I wanted to become a neurologist growing up — until I saw the 50 years of schooling I had in front of me (haha j/k). I was part of the dot-com age and technology spoke to me the most, aside from sports. (I realized that a 5’4” Filipino could never make it to the NHL so…. lol.)
My goal was to become a software developer and I felt that was my destiny. My first job out of university was this ‘quality assurance’ gig that I knew nothing about, but I was interested in the experience. Unknowingly, this role pulled on my own natural strengths: building relationships with a variety of people involved in software development, understanding our end customer, and being that ‘scenario-ist’ to devise ways on how to test software. If you’re that expert player of the ‘what if..’ game for anything, this is the role for you. 😀 I did try other roles in development and professional services, however my path always brought me back to Quality Assurance where I’ve had a wonderful career.
Why did you first join CoLab? What’s the most exciting thing about working here?
Great question! Honestly, the company prior to CoLab I thought was to be my retiring company, until I caught wind of a very sincere friend and former colleague of mine who joined CoLab. I felt I had some unfinished business with this person — to, you know, conquer the world! Out of interest, I spoke to that friend, who led me into an informal chat with CoLab’s recruiter Tessa. And we all know what happens when you first speak with Tessa… you fall in love with her and CoLab. From being “Tessa’d” and then speaking with the number of others who I interviewed with, there’s a draw, a positive energy, that is unique and consistent. It’s so inviting that you can NOT say no. Family, community, and connection is a large part of my ‘center’ and I’ve felt a similarly shared feeling in each conversation I’ve had with all the people at CoLab. This is one of the best and most exciting parts about working here — the people. We move as #OneTeam, we’re transparent, we’re driven, highly engaged, and a lot of fun. (Oh and did I mention yet that we want to take over the world? 😉)
If you had to be shipwrecked on a deserted island, but all your human needs—such as food and water—were taken care of, what two items would you want to have with you?
The first… a bottomless IPA keg. Nothing like a great IPA to hit the spot! The second, a working mobile phone of course! So I can stay in touch with everyone, from family and friends to the people I mentor and coach.