Throughout the school year, students in DECA compete on a regional and state level in a variety of marketing and business focused events. DECA enhances the preparation for college and careers by providing co-curricular programs that integrate into classroom instruction, apply learning, connect to business and promote competition. The competitions are designed to simulate real-life business scenarios and test students’ academic understanding and skills development.
The top state and provincial winners put their talents to the test during the program’s final round of competition in Nashville. The DECA International Career Development Conference was the pinnacle of competition where nearly 18,000 students from the United States, Canada, Germany, and China vied for international honors.
This year, the International competition was held in Nashville, Tennessee April 23rd-26th. Andrew Bauman, Tia Carlson, Makayla O’Brien and Nicholas Schone represented Glenwood City DECA. Andrew Bauman competed in the Business Finance series, Tia Carlson competed in Professional Selling-Financial Consulting, Makayla O’Brien competed in Principles of Hospitality and Tourism and Nicholas Schone competed in Personal Financial Literacy. The students were tested on their marketing and business knowledge, critical thinking skills, along with verbal and non-verbal communication abilities.
Nicholas Schone earned a “top finalist” award which required him to advance to a second round of competitions. He ranked “top 10” out of over 180 students in Personal Financial Literacy and made it on stage at the Bridgestone Arena in front of nearly 18,000 people!
Mrs. Hentz and the students traveled alongside Eau Claire, Menomonie, La Crosse and Sparta DECA. In addition to the competitions, the group was able to experience the Grand Ole Opry, a Nashville Sounds Baseball game, and a river boat cruise on the Cumberland River.
“Competing at ICDC is always the pinnacle of the DECA year,” Schone said. “Not only competing, but making finals and eventually becoming a top ten finisher in the world created the most memorable conference I have ever been a part of. Five of us traveled to Nashville, but when my name was announced in front of 18,000 of the world’s brightest students, every last student that was there to represent Wisconsin DECA was on their feet screaming with excitement. The experience was one that words cannot describe, and the feelings of raw emotion throughout this trip will stick with me for the rest of my life.”