Neevee Kidlapik got up in front of 30 strangers, including six judges, at Skills Canada nationals in Halifax and informed them about environmental sustainability in Nunavut.
It made her very nervous, she admitted.
“Once you get it over with, it’s OK. You get used to the people,” she said, adding that it’s her first time at the national event, which was held Tuesday and Wednesday in Halifax.
Kidlapik, who graduates from Tuugaalik High School this fall, was a participant in the public speaking division at the event. She spent seven minutes expounding on the difficulty of reducing, reusing and recycling in Nunavut. It’s expensive to ship recyclables south and costly to rely on expertise from outside the territory, she said.
“Getting all these people from down south to come all the way up to the High North, that costs a lot of money. We can also train the people who live here,” she said.
She also gave a briefer address, only about two minutes, making points about how Skills Canada can provide important life lessons.
Asked if she would give a speech in Inuktitut for the judges, she smiled and said she doesn’t feel confident enough in her fluency to do that.
“And nobody would understand me,” she said.
Kidlapik was attracted to the public speaking category because she has been accepted into the Nunavut Sivuniksavut college program in Ottawa and she knows students there do quite a bit of public speaking.
“I just wanted to get into that area,” she said, adding that her she’s still considering numerous career options.