Skilled youth

Kevin Curley
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CNA Bonavista students medal in skills competition

Students from the Bonavista College of the North Atlantic translated their skills into medals at the 17 annual Skills Canada Provincial Competition in St. John's.

College of the North Atlantic Bonavista campus Skills Canada medal winners. From left to right, Tyler Pritchett, Chantille Prince-Stagg and Kaitlyn Oldford. 

All three students from the Bonavista campus who entered the competition took home a medal with Tyler Pritchett winning bronze in electrical, Kaitlyn Oldford winning silver in cooking and Chantille Prince-Stagg winning gold in office administration for the second year in a row.

Nearly 300 students and apprentice regional finalists from across Newfoundland and Labrador gathered in St. John's to compete in the 34 various competitions with the goal of raising awareness of skilled trades and technologies by bringing youth into a competitive spotlight.

Students brought an instructor with them as well as a mentor.

Chef instructor Chris Sheppard and his cooking student started the competition at 7 a.m. and were in competition until 3 p.m.

"It was a long day and she competed very well against the other students and took home silver," says Sheppard.

Sheppard and his student, Oldford, had practiced for a month in preparation of the competition. A list is released a month prior outlining potential ingredients.

"We were given some possible mystery ingredients that could be selected and the night before we found what the ingredients were. So we had to practice a variety of dishes and prepare different things using all ingredients not knowing what they would be," says Sheppard.

"I think it's exciting that we sent in three students and got three medals back. It just shows the caliber of education that we are providing in the region," he says.

Prince-Stagg won gold representing the College of the North Atlantic Office Administration program in the IT Software Solutions for Business category.

She won gold last year and competed at the national competition in Vancouver.

"I absolutely loved the experience, so I'm very excited to be competing again this year," says Prince-Stagg.

For her competition she created documents using Microsoft Office programs such as Word, Excel, Access and PowerPoint.

She will compete at the national competition in Toronto from June 3 to 7.

"This is the 20 year for the competition so it seems like everything is going to be bigger and better. I'm very excited and super confident that I'm going to get a medal this year. I came really close to getting a place last year; I was just a few points away from bronze. Now that I've been there and know what to expect I'm going to prepared and hope to get on stage this year," she says.

Prince-Stagg says taking the office administration program at the Bonavista College of the North Atlantic was one of the best decisions she has ever made.

"It has provided me with so many skills and it prepared me for the Skills Canada competition."

Organizations: College of the North Atlantic Office Administration, Bonavista College of the North Atlantic, IT Software Solutions for Business Microsoft Office PowerPoint Skills Canada

Geographic location: Newfoundland and Labrador, St. John's, Vancouver Toronto

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