Winning not one, but two medals is how Emmaleigh Ayotte finished her year at Lakeland College.
This recent esthetician graduate put her skills to the test in the aesthetics category of the 2021 Alberta Provincial Skills Canada Competition in May, winning first place. Ayotte then reached the podium with a bronze medal win at the Skills Canada National Competition in June.
“It’s been such a rewarding way to finish my Lakeland experience this year,” says Ayotte, who hails from St. Paul. “I am really thankful for all of the experience I’ve gotten from competing.”
Motivated by a peer to compete, Ayotte says the training and support she received from her instructors, including Deb Minish, helped her to manage any stress she experienced leading up to the competitions.
“Deb and everyone else helped me to prepare for the competitions. They helped me to perfect my work, giving
ideas and tips,” says Ayotte.
Held virtually this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Ayotte competed at Lakeland’s Lloydminster campus spa. The competition challenges included a facial analysis, pedicure and manicure with nail art, a smoky eye look and fantasy makeup application inspired by the 1980s.
Putting her creative skills into action, Ayotte drew inspiration from the Tim Burton classic, Beetlejuice, for the last challenge.
“I am really thankful to everyone who helped me with these competitions because I couldn’t have done it without them,” she says. “I have been passionate about esthetics my whole life and this experience has really validated that.”
Two other Lakeland students made the podium at provincial Skills Canada competitions. Destiny Neufield was second in Alberta in the aesthetics category while Paige Lehmann won silver in the Saskatchewan hairstyling category.
“We are so proud of our students and their achievements this year,” says Janice Aughey, dean, School of Health and Wellness and Human Services. “Completing their programs while navigating a pandemic has been an accomplishment in and of itself. Entering Skills Canada and medaling in their competitions is a testament to the dedication and commitment these students have for their field.”
“We’re grateful for the help and support from the college and our industry partners, especially with the competition held virtually this year,” adds Minish, chair, School of Health and Wellness. “We couldn’t be prouder of our students and their perseverance.”
Equally excited to celebrate Ayotte’s success at the Skills Canada competitions are her colleagues at Just for You Day Spa in Lloydminster.
“They’re so happy and supportive – it’s great to be part of this team,” says Ayotte, who’s been working at the spa since May. The Class of 2021 esthetician graduate will return to Lakeland next year to complete the six-week clinical esthetician program. Ayotte’s excited for the career opportunities that training will offer in the future.
Lakeland College’s School of Health and Wellness offers one-year certificate programs in clinical esthetician, esthetician, hairstyling and health care aide.
Learn more at lakelandcollege.ca/wellness.
Applications open for fall 2021.