Spring Lake Park High School senior Makenna Leik has been awarded the Platinum level Graduating Seniors Award from the Program Development Committee of U.S. Figure Skating for her dedication to pursuing figure skating while maintaining her school academics.
“I was very excited to receive the Graduating Seniors Award at the Platinum level,” Makenna Leik said. “It was a validation of my hard work and is a representation of what I’ve accomplished in figure skating.”
The Graduating Senior Awards are given at the Platinum, Gold, Silver and Bronze level based on a skater’s level of competitive achievement in high school. Being selected for this award speaks to a skater’s continued commitment to succeeding in their athletic and academic efforts.
“While figure skating is not a traditional school sport, it requires the same dedication, perseverance and time management as any varsity sport,” said U.S. Figure Skating Programs Manager Karissa Woienski. “It is the goal of U.S. Figure Skating to help ensure these student-athletes are recognized for those skills.”
Leik, who started skating before turning one and competing at the age of four, has competed in eight Minnesota skate championships, six regional championships, three sectional championships and two U.S. synchronized skating championships.
In 2017, she was the Minnesota State Silver Medalist at the Senior level and her Synchronization Team, the Northernettes, won the 2019 Midwestern Sectional Championship, qualifying them for the national championships. She has competed for the Northernettes Junior team the past two seasons and was team captain during the 2018-2019 season. She is also a U.S. Figure Skating quadruple Gold Medalist and has passed her gold tests in Moves, Field, Free Style, Dance and Solo Free Dance.
In addition to figure skating, Leik is a part of the SLPHS Girls’ Golf team. She has also been involved with the Panther Mentors program as a mentor her junior year and house leader her senior year.
“As a student-athlete, I balance school and skating by having good communication,” Leik said. “During the skating season, I have to miss a lot of school, but by planning ahead and always telling my teachers in advance I have been able to succeed academically and in skating.”
After graduation, Leik will be attending Miami University and will compete on the University’s Varsity Synchronized Skating team at the Senior level, representing Miami University and Team USA across seas.
Team USA will announce the team’s international assignments in October 2019. Last year, Miami University competed in Croatia and Sweden, representing U.S. Figure Skating and Team USA.