A local high school student has won a silver medal at the national Skills Canada competition. Jason Cote competed in Outdoor Power and Recreation Equipment in Winnipeg, and was ranked second of eight competitors from across Canada.
On June 1st and 2nd, they were judged on a series of labs, doing everything from fixing up quads and dirt bikes to small engines. Cote says his skills came naturally to him, as his father owns a small engine shop in Bezanson.
“Ever since I’ve been a little kid I’ve been out in the shop at home and we’ve been working on that kind of stuff ever since I remember,” he explains. “I’ve learned everything from dad.”
Cote competed in last year’s regional competition, earning second place. This year he made it to provincials and won the silver medal, but the first place winner had to give up their spot at nationals.
“It was pretty cool; it was relieving, I guess, that I’d be able to go to the national level and compete and represent Team Alberta,” he says. “I’m going to go for it again and see if I can get first next year.”
Cote is in grade 11 at Peace Wapiti Academy and says he wants to become a licensed motorcycle mechanic once he graduates. He encourages his peers to get involved with the Skills Canada program.
“It’s a really good experience to go and do it; it’s fun for everybody to go and be a part of it,” he says. “Do what you want do. Don’t be shy or scared to follow your dreams or do whatever you want to d in life.”
Joining Cote on Team Alberta from the Grande Prairie area were fellow PWA students Brandon Toews and Morgan Embree, who earned gold at provincials in robotics, and Scott Nelson and Shelby Lalonde of Grande Prairie Composite High, who took provincial gold in video production.