by Michael Brown ’19 (De La Salle House)
DECA, a worldwide business competition for high schoolers all around the world, was brought to Trinity just three years ago. In the last three years, although small, our DECA club members have been extremely successful. This year, we qualified five individuals for the state competition at the Hershey Lodge. This was a very big accomplishment, as placing at the district competition is no easy task.
While at the DECA state competition, we had an action-packed schedule. A short amount of time after we arrived, we took a test on our basic knowledge of the type of competition that we chose. My partner, Connor McCarthy, and I took the marketing exam as our specific competition was “Sports and Entertainment Marketing Team Decision Making Event.” After everyone at the event took their respective examinations, thousands of high schoolers then proceeded to pack into the gigantic ballroom for the opening ceremonies.
The next day was the second part of our competition, the role play. During this high-pressure half hour interval, we were presented with a specific problem in a case study format. We had fifteen minutes to read the study and ten minutes to present our ideas and solutions to the panel of judges. Our specific case study involved developing a marketing tactic to try to keep more high school girls in sports. The high-pressure environment was deliberate, as DECA aimed to prepare its members to use aspects of teamwork to achieve a goal in a short period of time.
As for the rest of the second day of competition, Connor and I took part in various interactive workshops. The highlight of this day for me was when I voted for the district and state DECA representatives. As Trinity’s DECA club president, I had special voting privileges that allowed me to hear speeches, interact with candidates, and then vote for the person that I thought would best fit the job. The second day ended with a mini ceremony, in which Connor and I received an award for having one of the top 5 test scores out of our 32 team competition.
On the third and final day, everyone crammed into the grand ballroom for the final awards ceremony. Throughout the ceremony, two of our chapter members received awards. Xinyi Wang ’20 (Seton House) and Alyssa Matzoni ’21 (Immaculata House) both placed in their highly-competitive competitions, with Alyssa qualifying for nationals this April!
DECA not only provided an action-packed three days, but provided me an opportunity to experience the business field and what it has to offer. If you ask anyone who has been to this event, it is more about participants intentions in the future rather than ending the week with a trophy. Connor and I never thought that we would improve our interpersonal, test-taking, and business skills in such a short amount of time. Everyone in Trinity’s DECA club is very grateful for the opportunity to attend this event and we hope that the interest in this fantastic learning opportunity only increases.