Aveda Institute Winnipeg Educators Show Their Hearts –and Win!

“When we heard about the Heart of the Mission Contest we immediately thought, ‘We so need to be involved in this,’” said Kathleen Orbanski, an educator at the Aveda Institute in Winnipeg (AIW), and Naomi Brien, AIW marketing manager.

At Aveda, our mission is to care for the world we live in, from the products we make to the ways in which we give back to society. Aveda Institude educators strive to set an example for environmental leadership and responsibility, not just in the world of beauty, but around the world.

Orbanski, Brien, and their team knew they exemplified Aveda’s values through their work in the community and commitment to the environment. They also knew they had what it took to win – and they were right!

AIW Aveda Educators Earn the Win

The Heart of the Mission contest called on Aveda educators to create a 2-4 minute video highlighting the Aveda Institute’s educator team and showcasing how they embody that mission. Aveda asked that the video reflect school culture, illustrate how the team lives the Aveda mission, convey professionalism and provide inspiration.

“I’m definitely someone who is inspired by Aveda and their mission,” said Orbanski, an educator who had once been a student at the Institute. So, they got to work. Along with their team, they put together a submission to showcase their way of living the Aveda mission–and won! Their video, seen here, as well as their process truly exemplified Aveda’s mission, highlighting AIW’s environmental and community leadership practices and the ways they seek to better the world around them.

The result was moving and inspiring: the Winnipeg team’s dedication to Aveda’s mission is compelling. In the video, Kalina Villamar said, “The Aveda Mission to me means giving back to our community – and having the students understand the why behind why giving back to our community is important.” The school participates in projects such as a walk for water, washing wigs for cancer care, donating haircuts to community members, and fundraising for the local community.

Education in Process

The AIW team (Naomi Brien, Natalia Lyczkowska, Kalina Villamar, Natasha Urban, Katherine Orbanski, Amilia Mulchand and Nicole Diamond) all pitched in. The educators’ excitement and commitment to the process made the video come to life in a way that was much more powerful than they expected. “Our educators are so dedicated,” said Brien. “I think the most challenging thing was honing in on specific experiences to talk about because there’s just so many things that we could have said,” Orbanski added.

But the most rewarding part of the process was gaining a deeper knowledge of each other and watching their dedication to the Aveda mission come to life. “I think it was wonderful even just internally for the whole team to see the video and to see the focus that we were putting on them,” explained Brien. “Seeing that piece of content that was all about highlighting them and really sharing how special they are and how much they do for us.”

Orbanski added. “Hearing other staff members talk, I was like, ‘wow, I’ve never actually thought of something that way.’ And it really put my thoughts into perspective.”

Embodying the Mission

The Winnipeg team earned the win by embodying the Aveda spirit wholly. “Our education team is so worthy- they do so much for our students. They really go above and beyond every single day,” said Brien. “Our team is so dedicated and to be able to highlight them and tell their stories and really have them have our team and our educators be acknowledged on that scale was so rewarding.”

Would they do it again? Absolutely.

The making of this video had lasting effects on Orbanski. “I’m more inspired as an educator- I’m trying to be there more for my students and trying to be more present with their lives and issues that they’re going through so I can better help them.” For Brien, being able to get their team the recognition they deserve was the greatest takeaway. “We really have an amazing community and I’m so overjoyed that Aveda gave us the opportunity to highlight that.” The whole team at AIW agreed: the work they do through through AIW helps them better the environment and the community, and they love leading the next generation of stylists and educators to do the same.

Congratulations to the whole team at AIW!

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