AcaDeca wins medals, goes to state

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Image courtesy of Aghigh Banitaba.

Defne Onal staff writer  

After competing at the regional competition, AcaDeca had its award ceremony on Feb. 18. Across their team of nine, AcaDeca received 20 medals. Due to their accomplishments at the regionals, AcaDeca also attended the state competition

On March 3, the essay part of the state competition occurred. On March 16-17, members took a multiple-choice test. On March 20, the speech/interview part of the competition took place. 

“I felt excited and rewarded. Last year, we were not able to have a complete team. Because of that, we couldn’t compete in the state competition. This year I was extremely happy to have a complete team and to be able to compete together despite this unforeseen situation and move on to state,” AcaDeca president junior Aghigh Banitaba said. 

AcaDeca took procedures before the competition to made sure no academic dishonesty occurred. 

“Before our competition, we had to…sign a Google form that contained an affidavit saying that we weren’t going to cheat. We also had to register the calculators that we were going to use,” Banitaba said. “And before each of our competitions, they sent us practice tests that we had to complete by a certain date to make sure that all of our team members could access the website and that the website works.” 

The state competition comprises an “A-team” and a “B-team.” The A-team gets to compete in a contest that is similar to the regional competition. However, the B-team does not compete as a “team” in the state competition. Instead, they can qualify to compete in a heptathlon.

“The B-team, if they qualify, can sign up for a heptathlon. They don’t compete in the speech, interview and essay, which are the objectives, but they do all the other tests to see how they do,” Banitaba said. 

Sophomore Alexandra Bakshian was the only member left on the B-team who wanted to compete in a heptathlon. 

“I went to state, but I went to state through the heptathlon, which is an individual competition. About going to state, I’m excited because it’s just exciting that all of our hard work paid off,” Bakshian said. 

AcaDeca members had to memorize the information in the resource guides to study for the state competition. 

“It was difficult, considering that there were six guides. We then took many quizzes and answered many guiding questions to test our mastery and understanding of the guides. I think people are proud of my accomplishments,” junior B’anwi Fomukong said.  “[For the regional competition], I got gold in speech and silver in interview. We all did well as a collective group, and the hard work we all put in helped us go to state.” 

Fomukong scored 980 in speech and 970 in the interview. For her speech, she had to memorize a prepared speech she made about musical beats’ importance. 

“I had to make an abstract topic seem interesting and explorative. For an interview, I had to answer questions from judges and make them interested in what I have to say while finding equilibrium between being casual and formal,” Fomukong said. 

According to Banitaba, the awards appointed to members will influence students to continue competing with AcaDeca.  

“A big part of the competition is the reward that you get at the end and the pride that you will have for your hard work,” Banitaba said. “ I think that it will be a big motivational factor for returning members.”

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