Hometown: Edmonton, AB
Lauren Heinsar leads life by example, with a zest for life, dedication to her studies, and commitment to giving back to the community. She has spent much of her life involved in causes dear to her heart. One of many includes the Make A Wish foundation, for whom she has been a Wish Interviewer, wish grantor and special events volunteer. Her efforts to promote a life of service amongst her peers has been exemplified through her elected position of VP Service in the University of Alberta chapter of Golden Key International honour society. In this position she organized and managed volunteers for a variety of events with local organizations including Ronald McDonald House and Events Edmonton.
Lauren takes pride in being a Canadian. Her family history has influenced her love and respect for Canada as her great great Grandfather traveled to Canada to work for the Hudson Bay Company. Her other Grandparents were new immigrants to Canada in the 1940’s who came over by ship from Estonia. She believes that Canada is a diverse country, full of life and culture. Though reasons for immigrating may vary, each individual plays an important role as a Canadian citizen. She believes that Canada is accepting of all peoples and their backgrounds, overflowing with natural resources and jobs, and one that promotes peace to the nations.
As a true Albertan woman, Lauren loves being immersed in country culture. She can perform a variety of line dances and spin gracefully into the arms of a partner when two-stepping. Her love for music extends beyond country music to include classical, pop and jazz. Lauren believes music provides an avenue for self expression. She uses songwriting as a creative outlet to share her life experiences.
While Alberta is currently her home, Lauren thrives on adventure and exploration of new people and places. Her dream is to explore China, experience its culture, travel through rural China, and walk the Great Wall. A life of adventure not only involves travel, but a mindset to be open to new experiences.The motto, “if you don’t ask, the answer will always be no,” has encouraged her to be courageous and bold in action.
ATB Financial, Dermaesthetics, The Extensionist, Darrell AP Gotaas Professional Corporation, The Smile Spot, Terwillegar Dental Centre, Chiropractic on Whyte, Shandro Photo, Barre Body Studio, Friends and Family
Languages spoken fluently (please include your native language if English is not your native language).
What are your interests and what do you enjoy doing the most?
To me, people matter most in life. I love meeting new people and learning other’s stories. Because of this, volunteering has become an important part of my life. With the influence of my mother, an admirable philanthropist, I began volunteering at the age of 11.
Living an active lifestyle is at the core of who I am. There is nothing more invigorating to me than being challenged to achieve a personal goal. With a variety of routes and levels to surpass, indoor rock climbing provides me with an authentic personal challenge. Other challenging workouts I enjoy are pilates, ballet barre, and spin biking. In addition, being outdoors and hiking provides me with a more peaceful outlet, where I can appreciate earth’s natural beauty.
I have been fortunate to explore many places including USA, Great Britain, Ireland, Scotland, Gibraltar, and Mexico. With an adventurous spirit, I look forward to continuing my travel pursuits across our culturally diverse world. I would love to explore China, see the Great Wall and experience authentic Chinese culture and cuisine.
List any special training you have had (music, art, drama, dance, etc.)
- Dance Training – Jazz, ballet, tap, hip hop
- Voice Lessons
- CSEP- CPT certification for personal training
- Musical Training – piano and guitar
- Administering standardized reading testing
In what sports, if any, have you participated?
My athletics began as a young child, chasing a soccer ball across grassy fields. As I grew, my exposure to a variety of sports increased, and I became involved in three main sports; cheer, basketball, and field hockey. With a dance background, I naturally took an interest in cheerleading. I thrived on providing entertainment to a crowd, striking poses and facials, and performing at various venues. With the influence of my Grandfather, my sport interests widened to include basketball, which I pursued for several years through my youth. Though my height was the initial determinant of my participation, I learned the skills I needed to fight for success. It not only included sport specific skills, but self discipline too. Participating in the Alberta Summer Games, as a Field Hockey player was one of the highlights of my sporting endeavours. It exposed me to high level competition and allowed me to meet many athletes from across the province. Participating in team sports has always appealed to me because I believe that more can be accomplished when people are working together to achieve a common goal. It has taught me to be accountable to my actions and disciplined in my fitness endeavours and practice.
Name one person, other than your parents, who has had the most influence on your life. Why?
I have been positively influenced by many wonderful people whom I have met through a variety of situations, but one person who stands out is my friend and aunt Janet. She embodies the qualities of an influential woman; encouraging, supportive, generous and others centred. Whatever goal I set out to achieve, she always affirms that I can achieve it as long as I align it with hard work and a good attitude. Her generosity and value for education is admirable, as she raises money for underprivileged women to go to University. In addition, she has an infectious laugh, always a smile on her face and positive words for others.
What is your proudest personal accomplishment (other than participating in this pageant)?
I believe each accomplishment, whether big or small, should be celebrated. Success and perseverance are built through small, intentional decisions and acts. I was honoured to walk the stage and receive my double major in Physical Education and Elementary Education with distinction, however, I am more proud of the process that it took to achieve my goal. While attending University, I developed skills of self discipline and time management, as I balanced school work with volunteering, mentorship, and part time jobs.
What is the most interesting or unique thing that has ever happened to you and/or what is the most interesting thing about you?
As an only child, I have been asked many times, “Have you ever wished you had a sibling?”. While I do not have any biological siblings, I have chosen 4 women who I love and respect to be my sisters. These women are my best friends and family. They have shown me in a tangible way what it means to love yourself and love others. Through my most successful moments and during my challenges they were there to support and encourage me, like a good sister would. Three of them now live in different cities, but we still hold an unbreakable bond.
What is your career ambition and what are you doing or plan to do to accomplish that goal?
We live in an age where having more than one career in a lifetime is the norm. My hope is that whatever I choose, it will be meaningful, challenging, and make a positive impact on others. Currently, my vocation is teaching. My desire is to create an environment where students develop a love for learning and acquire skills that will make them successful, influential members of society. This requires intentionality and creativity. I work alongside a group of amazing, forward thinking colleagues. Together, we strive to build equity within our teaching through regular meetings and conversations. In order to have success with our teaching and students, we need to build on what we know, and challenge ourselves to think beyond the status quo.
What would be your “dream job” in life?
Everyone has a story that is worth being heard. I want to see people’s lives changed, women being empowered and children being heard. My dream job would involve widening the scope of my influence to include not only my city, but Canada, and the world. For this reason, I would love to hold the position of Miss. Universe 2015.
Beyond this year, I dream of becoming a successful entrepreneur in the fitness industry. In addition to this, I would like to create and sustain a charitable organization that provides care and support to young, underprivileged mothers.
Are you currently a student?
No, but I have recently graduated from the University of Alberta in Edmonton.
Area of study: I graduated with a double major in Physical Education and Elementary Education.
Are you currently employed?
If yes, what is your occupation?
I am a full time elementary school teacher.
Describe where you were raised and what your childhood was like.
I was born and raised in Edmonton, Alberta. With rich family history and natural beauty, it was an ideal place to grow into the woman I am today. My great grandmother set the expectation for service to my family years before as she worked at YWCA for years as the dietician and head cook.
My foundation was built upon values of love, honesty, adventure and perseverance. I was very fortunate to be surrounded by role models who lived and continue to live these values on a daily basis. Within close proximity to the river valley, my parents and I enjoyed many long picturesque walks, weekend trips to the family ranch and road trips through the United States. It allowed me to develop an appreciation for adventure and recognizing beauty in other places. In addition, my parents have always encouraged me to perform my best in school and a variety of extra curricular activities such as dance, gymnastics, and sports.My childhood is full of memories of friends, family and athletics.
List any interesting or unusual jobs you may have had.
- Formatted Modules for Math, a Cognitive Training Manual for Teachers
- Wedding Greeter
- Organized and took children on field trips in a summer camp setting.
- Reading Research Assistant – I was involved in administering testing for a reading research study being conducted in 5 different countries in 5 different languages. It allowed me to build relationships with school staff and in turn provided me with an opportunity to encourage young women. I shared my own experiences of post secondary education and volunteerism in efforts to encourage them toward a scholarly future.
List any volunteering you have done.
- Make A Wish Northern Alberta: Wish Interviewing, Wish Granting, Special Events
- Mentor to young women as they grew from age 13 to 18.
- Organized Service Events as VP Service of University of Alberta’s Chapter of the Golden Key International Honour Society
- On-site safety at the Taste of Edmonton Festival
- Organized clothing and household donations at the Mustard Seed.
- Preparing and serving meals at Ronald McDonald House
- Wrapping Daffodils for the Canadian Cancer Society’s Daffodil Campaign
- Organized a games night for the Jasper Place Health and Wellness Centre
- Planned and executed a Fashion Show to raise money for Strathcona School Graduates.
- Childcare worker
- Assistant Cheer Coach
What is your most unusual talent?
As an Alberta girl, I have developed the talent of riding a mechanical bull. I can hold on for more than 8 seconds and spin!
Where is the most interesting place you have been to?
Undoubtedly, the most interesting place I’ve been is Gibraltar, a British Overseas territory which is located between Spain and Morocco. The quaint, small town feel and majestic rock, paint an interesting dichotomy between island tourism and natural beauty. Island apes live atop the rock and at certain times of the year, give birth to their young. A highlight of my family vacation was journeying up the rock to see the newly born apes. While visiting, I became an impromptu referee of a fight between my mother and a criminal ape, who was trying to steal her shiny black vest.
What do you hope to be doing in ten years?
I am confident that I will be pursuing my passions. I am passionate about educating others, helping children achieve their potential and encouraging others to live a healthy lifestyle.
Is there anything you would like to add that we haven’t asked?
I love bringing joy to other people’s lives! Whether it’s through an act of service, a compliment, a smile or sharing a funny experience, it gratifies me to see joy in another person’s eyes and a smile on their face. I believe joy and laughter are contagious and meant to be shared. In my pursuit of becoming Miss. Universe Canada, my goal is to be a model of service, joy, and uprightness.