From corporate business retreats to weddings and grand celebrations, Langdon Hall provides elegantly appointed event rooms that come alive with beautifully arranged setups and impeccable service. As an Event Setup and Conference Porter, Yihong Song is part of the dedicated team that takes pride in ensuring every detail is set to perfection for every event.
Yihong began his career organizing events in Shenzhen, China, where he was born and raised. He earned his university degree in logistics, and joined a company where he met his wife and began a flourishing career. Eventually, Yihong and his wife made a decision to explore a new path together in Canada.
“I quite enjoyed my career in China and was about to make a leap,” explains Yihong. “However, the profession was also changing and communicating with clients in English was increasing, which was hindering my career development since I wasn’t good enough in this universal language. So together my wife and I decided to enhance my skill set and explore a new lifestyle by moving to a new country.”
Yihong knew expanding his language skills by immersing himself in an English culture would benefit his future and they considered New Zealand, Australia, or Canada for their new home. The decision was made a little easier by the fact that Yihong’s sister had moved to Ontario with her family the year before.
“In January 2014 my wife and I moved to Kitchener where I began the English Language Studies program at Conestoga College,” says Yihong. “It was a stressful time as I could only understand 50% of the language and only speak 10%, but my classmates were very helpful and I gained so much knowledge.”
Moving to Canada and embracing English studies weren’t the only new experiences for Yihong and his wife; in September 2014 they welcomed their first child!
With a young family at home, Yihong continued his studies with the Event Management Program, followed by the Global Hospitality Program that enabled students to gain real-working experience by completing a co-op placement. It was during this final program that his instructor encouraged him to attend Langdon Hall’s career fair and inquire about a co-op placement.
“I was very nervous attending the career fair since through my research I knew Langdon Hall would have high expectations,” explains Yihong. “But I received an incredible friendly welcome and my co-op placement!”
May 2016 was also a pivotal time at Langdon Hall with the opening of the Firshade wing, a new expansion that included a large event space. Yihong was joining the growing Events and Conferences team responsible for the room set-up, dining service, and tear down of all events.
Yihong became a permanent team member after completing his co-op and has contributed to the many changes. “Looking back at the past year, our team’s role has evolved with each event, expanding our responsibilities, and opening new opportunities,” says Yihong. “I am always trying to understand all the different elements of the hotel system and looking for new ways to improve processes to ensure the ideal guest experience.”
Four years have quickly passed since Yihong and his wife first arrived in Canada and they have many accomplishments to be proud of. With their three year old son and now six month old daughter, the family has gained permanent residency in Canada and is ready to move on to the next stage.
“Langdon Hall has provided such a welcoming environment to both myself and my family,” says Yihong. “Although I have learnt so much in the past few years, I am excited about future possibilities.”