Photo courtesy Emma Scott
STATE OFFICER—Junior Haroni Sahilu, a new DECA State Officer, is awarded second place in Marketing Communications by South Dakota DECA Association President Jack Brenneman at the Washington Pavilion. 

Twenty-six DECA members compete at state conference
Several qualify for International Conference at event

From NOW staff reports

Quality work was rewarded for DECA students who earned places to compete at the international event in April during the 2019 South Dakota DECA State Conference held in Sioux Falls Feb. 24-25.

In total, 26 WHS students attended the conference held at Lincoln High School on Feb. 24 and the Washington Pavilion on Feb. 25. Opening the competing portion of the conference, Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken offered some words of advice and encouragement for the students. 

Founded in 1946 as the Distributive Education Clubs of America, today DECA is a career and technical student organization that supports the preparation of emerging leaders and entrepreneurs and has more than 200,000 members in all 50 states and several foreign countries.

At the event, students competed in over 20 individual and group events in five different career clusters—Business Management and Administration, Entrepreneurship, Finance, Hospitality and Tourism and Marketing. All students take a 100 question multiple choice test from the career cluster they have chosen, then compete in various role-play scenarios.  Students are given a case study in their category and they present their plan to a judge. The judge listens to the students’ plans and asks questions to complete the role play. Students are scored based on their answers. To finalize the scores, the test and the role play scores are added together. The top three from each individual event and the top two teams from the group events are awarded trophies and medals. These finalists also qualify to compete at the International Career Development Conference held in Orlando, Fla., April 27-30. 

Junior Meadow Scott said it is a difficult competition. 

“Although the results didn’t come out the way I wanted, I’ve learned a lot of leadership skills and to be more confident when speaking with others,” Scott said. “I encourage everyone to join DECA to see what it’s all about.”

In the individual events competition, juniors Haroni Sahilu placed first in Leadership and second in Marketing Communications, Layssa Pena second in Principles of Marketing, Sarahi Alvarez second in Apparel and Accessories, Merci Bita second in Entrepreneurship, Brayden Hagen second in Retail Merchandising and Kaela Wierenga second in Leadership.

Seniors Emma Scott placed third in Apparel and Accessories, Emmanuel Gayetaye third in Entrepreneurship and Asia Amos third in Retail Merchandising. Junior Kaela Wierenga placed third in Quick Serve Restaurant Management.
In the team events, Sahilu and Alvarez placed second in Marketing Management and Emma Scott and Amos second in Sports and Entertainment Marketing. 

Sahilu was also selected as the new South Dakota DECA State Officer for the 2019-20 school year at the event.


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