It has been a long journey for Humboldt’s Leah Lucyshyn as she competed in the Skills Canada International Competition, placing 10th overall against 22 other countries. While at the competition, she received a medallion of excellence.

"The medallion of excellence represents all my education experience. The hard work and training I’ve done over the past four years. It was very exciting to represent my country at an international level and be recognized for all the work I have done,” says Lucyshyn

She explained that the Skills Competitions are an Olympic-style competition for high school and postsecondary students in the skills trades and technology sectors. Competitions are held regionally, provincially, nationally, and internationally. 

Lucyshyn has competed in multiple Skills competitions throughout her life, even taking home gold in Nationals in the spring of 2022.

“This was different than any other competitions I have done. A lot of competitions I have done previously, because of COVID, were virtual; they weren’t in person. This was a whole nother level.”

She says the purpose of the Skills Competitions is to change the lives of young people through skills and promote the skills trades and technology careers to youths. Most competitions are designed for those 22 years of age and younger. 

“The competition I did specifically was for Graphic Design, but keep in mind there are plenty of other trades and technology competitions other than graphic design, so congratulations to all the other Canadians that also competed.”

She says going international brought a lot of unexpected turns for her, but travelling was still a great experience. 

“I travelled to Switzerland, so the travel in itself; I lost luggage, the flights were delayed, all those different unexpected things that can throw you off your game. So overall, travelling internationally was a very big change from what I was used to.”

She says her competition was spread across four days, where each day a new project was presented to complete in six hours. 

“One day was a corporate day, one day was branding, another day was editorial, and another was packaging. Each day they give you a fictitious or real client and they tell you what the client is wanting, what products they are needing specifically, and give you six hours to complete them to the best of your ability.”

She says these projects were some of the hardest she has had to do in her lifetime.

“I have practiced every single world-level competition project since 2011, and these were the most challenging."

She says the pressure of representing her country at the competition did not help when it came to the tough projects. 

“It was a lot on my shoulders representing Canada; you want to do the best you can, but there are a lot of unexpected things that can happen. You’re not able to do your best when all those little things are happening.”

With an international competition underneath her belt, she says looking back at the last four years has been a journey. 

“It’s really great for me to look back and see how I have progressed in the last four years, and all the little things you do to improve yourself that don’t seem like that big a deal, but in the long run make a really big difference.”