DECA Members Achieve International Success At ICDC

Jenny Xu, Executive Editor

Juniors Richard Lai and Richard Liu pose for a photo after being named as finalists in their event.

A record-breaking number of Distributive Education Clubs of America (DECA) students made the trip to Atlanta to compete in the 2018 International Career Development Conference (ICDC) from April 21-25. Out of the 50 students who participated, 14 were recognized for excellence in either their test or presentation, and six placed in the top 10 of their competition, putting them among the world’s best in their business-related event.

“[My partner and I] both agreed to not study for our event and not go in with the pressure or expectation of doing well,” finalist Richard Lai ‘19 said. “I think that’s what helped us to do better because we were just having fun with it, and we didn’t feel that nervous going into it so we were able to perform at our best.”

Aside from competitive events, various leadership academies were also offered for students who held an officer position in their chapter.

“The academy I attended was called Elevate, and it allowed me to network with various members of DECA chapters across the world,” chapter vice president David Kim ‘19 said. “I developed my leadership skills to better help my chapter grow into a more successful venue for students to increase their skills related to marketing and entrepreneurship.”

While students spent a significant amount of time preparing for their competition, they were still able to explore what the city had to offer, including the Georgia Aquarium and the Coca-Cola museum. DECA also offered their own activities, giving attendees the chance to mingle at Opening Ceremony and an Andy Grammer concert.

“I got to meet a lot of new people, and there’s many different things that you can do there like hat and pin trading,” Albert Chen ‘18 said. “It was really fun being able to hang out with friends, and we had a little more freedom compared to a normal state DECA convention because there were less people from our school.”

Chapter adviser Mr. Jeffery Siler credits much of this year’s success to November’s DECA Day event, where students were able to participate in a mock competition in order to better prepare for future events.

“I want to help the students be even more prepared next year — I personally would like more practice sessions and materials,” Mr. Siler said. “I want to continue to build the program, we certainly are going to educate students about DECA because there are a lot of opportunities for all the kids and I’m sure there are a number of students out there who don’t really know a lot about DECA. [ICDC] was a great time, I saw smiles on kids’ faces, saw them learning and being proud of what they’ve accomplished.”

The full list of attendees can be found here. Those who were awarded for excellence in their event are highlighted in yellow.