University of Calgary

Hieu Ngo

  • Associate Professor
  • Associate Dean (Teaching/Learning)
  • Advocacy
  • Child & Adolescent Development
  • Community Development & Practice
  • Comparative Learning Styles
  • Group Work

Research Interests

Immigrants & Refugees:

Racialized Minorities:

Human Service Organizations:

Currently Teaching

Not currently teaching any courses.


Hieu Van Ngo joined the Faculty of Social Work as an assistant professor in 2012. He is grounded in life experience, professional practice and community leadership. Since 2001, Hieu has developed and led more than 13 collaborative projects with a total value of $6.4 million. His scholarship and practice have focused on youth gang prevention, diversity and inclusion, non-profit management, community leadership and community-based research. Hieu is passionate about transformative learning and teaching, and has mentored a number of graduate and undergraduate students within the university and across the globe. 

Research and Scholarly Activity


Areas of Focus: 

Immigrant children and youth, gang prevention, organizational practice, community practice, diversity competency, social entrepreneurship, community leadership, critical social work, arts-based social work practice, community-based research and theoretical development

Current Research

Hieu is the principal investigator of the Identity-Based Wraparound Intervention Project. This collaborative action research aims to develop a Canadian approach to youth gang prevention through integration of direct support to high risk and gang involved youth from immigrant families, research and evaluation, and multi-stakeholder collaboration.  Among the key partners include the Centre for Newcomers, Calgary Police Service, Calgary Board of Education, Calgary Catholic School District, Alberta Health Services and City of Calgary. This five-year project was awarded $5.3 million by Public Safety Canada.

Other research projects include:

  • Contributions of Microloans to Economic and Social Integration of Skilled Immigrants (Co-Investigators:  Dr. Lloyd Wong, Caroline Sommerfeld)
  • International Group Study through a Social Justice Lens
  • Supporting Somali Canadian Youth and Families in Calgary (Co-Investigators: Dr. Martha Fanjoy)
  • Sustainability in Youth Crime Prevention (Co-Investigators:  Frank Johnston, Judy Hansen, Susan Ramsundarsingh)
  • Understanding the Non-Profit Sector in Vietnam: Development, Challenges and Opportunities


  • PhD, University of Calgary
  • MSW, University of Calgary
  • BSW, University of Calgary


Professional and Community Associations

Hieu’s involvement at the university and in the community is extensive. He has participated in the University of Calgary Academic Sustainability Committee providing input for the development of a plan to promote sustainability. He has reviewed undergraduate research proposals as a member of the Markin Undergraduate Student Research Program Committee, as well as being active in numerous committees at the faculty level. Within the community, Hieu has served in leadership roles at the Coalition for Equal Access to Education, the Centre for Newcomers, the Ethno-cultural Council of Calgary, Calgary Foundation and All Nations Theatre. He has served an advisor to various local and international organizations, including Asian Heritage Foundation, Calgary Vietnamese Youth Association, Institute for Community Prosperity, INTESDA, and LIN Centre for Community Development. 

Hieu is a member of International Federation of Social Workers, Asia and Pacific Islands Social Work Educators Association, Alberta College of Social Workers and Canadian Association of Social Workers.


  • Peak Scholar Award: 2015
  • Terry Fox Humanitarian Award: 1993-1997
  • Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Doctoral Scholarship: 2006-2008
  • Izaak Walton Killam Scholarship Award: 2008



2015, Oct 9, Globe and Mail, Calgary’s young Vietnamese ‘pay it forward’ to Syrian refugees.

2015, Sept, Alberta Views, Language limbo: The urgent need for more ESL instruction in school.

2014, Sept 16, Globe and Mail, Report offers rare peek into Canadian gang life and high risk youth.

2014, Jun 6, Calgary Herald, Programs help immigrant youth embrace culture, avoid path to crime.

2014, Winter, U Magazine, Bridging the gap: Understanding the culture of youth violence is the first step 

2013, Aug 5, Radio France Internationale, Les festival “Viet Pride” au Vietnam 

2013, Aug 1, Thanh Nien News, Gay pride march returns to Vietnam capital 

2013, Summer, The Advocate, Calgary celebrates social work week

2013, Mar 16, Canada Updates, Canada offers loans to immigrant skilled workers. 

2013, Mar 11, Metro Regina, Program gives Saskatchewan’s immigrant skilled workers loans for training, accreditation. 

2011, Sep 12, Metro, Shedding light on the lives of youth gang members. 

2011, Apr 9, Vancouver Sun, More support key to solving ethnic gang problem. 

2011, March 28, Vancouver Sun, Immigrant youths lured by gangs, study shows. 

2011, Feb 25, CBC Calgary, ESL cut hits the most vulnerable: Critic.  

2011, Jan 11,  UToday, Protecting immigrant youth. 

2011, Jan, Accent, Intersections. 

2010, Nov 2, Radio Canada International, Keeping immigrant youth out of criminal gangs. 

2010, Dec 5, Calgary Herald, Province taking wraps off of anti-gang strategy. 

2009, Oct 15, Home Stretch Program CBC, Alberta schools not in sync with changing diversity.

2009, Jan 29, Calgary Herald, New educational centre supports Sudanese youth. 

2009, Oct 26, Calgary Herald, Alberta’s ESL population exploding; parents worry kids have poor English skills. 

2008, Oct 30, Calgary Herald, Program empowers immigrants to make changes for community. 


2008, Apr 17, The Coast, Cows or people. 


Ngo, V. H., Calhoun, A., Worthington, C., Pyrch, T., & Este, D. (forthcoming). The unravelling of identities and belonging: Criminal gang involvement of youth from immigrant families. International Journal of Immigration and Integration.

Ngo, V. H., & Kawaguchi, J. (forthcoming). The contribution of microloans to economic and social integration of skilled immigrants. International Journal of Social Entrepreneurship and Innovation.

Ngo, V. H.; Rossiter, J. M.; & Stewart, C. (2013). Understanding risk and protective factors associated with criminal involvement in a multicultural society. International Journal of Child, Youth and Family Studies, 4(1), 54-71.

Este, D., & Ngo, V. H. (2011). A resilience framework to examine immigrant and refugee children and youth in Canada. In S. S. Chuang & R. P. Moreno (Eds.), Immigrant children, adaptation, and cultural transformation (pp.27-50). Lanham, MD: Lexington Books.

Ngo, V. H. (2012).  Cultural competence in Alberta schools. TESL Canada Journal, 29(6), 204-233.

Ngo, V. H. (2009).  Patchwork, sidelining and marginalization: Services for immigrant youth. Journal of Immigrants and Refugees Studies, 7, 82-100.

Ngo, V. H. (2008). Critical examination of acculturation theories. Critical Social Work, 9(1).  Beatty, R., Bedford, J., Both, P., Eld, J., Goitom, M., Heinrichs, L., Moran-Bonilla, L., Massoud, M., Ngo, H.V., Pyrch, T., Rogerson, M., Sitter, K., Eagle Speaker, C., & Unrau, M. (2008). Recording action research in a classroom:  Singing with chickadees. Educational Action Research, 3(16), 335-344.


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