DECA participants win SDSC competition


Jessica Saadian, staff writer

DECA students went to Santa Clara this weekend to network with students from all over California and to compete in the State Career Development Conference (SCDC) on February 28-March 2.

Students went to numerous workshops, learning more on how to improve their skills on leadership, marketing and business. Individuals also competed with others, testing their knowledge they have received from the DECA program. Students may receive scholarships from the state competition and prestigious awards if they win at the International Career Development Conference (ICDC).

The challenge winners who participated in the SCDC are President Hooman Zarrabi; VP Olivia Koshy; VP of community service Shyra Costas; and Publicity VP Kevin Delijani.

Senior Alex Hubschman participated in the Retail Merchandising Services, an individual event, and placed “top 10” for achieving a score of 90 percent in two role plays. Junior Samuel Schnapp and Senior Jeffrey Toobi won fourth place in the Marketing Communications Team Event . In addition, Schnapp also placed “top 10” for the 100 question exam portion of the event.

Toobi and Scnapp were presented with a business communications scenario for the Marketing Communications Team Event and needed to reenact the scene with the judge. Toobi and Schnapp had to analyze a hypothetical situation and conduct a strategy in under half an hour.

“I was extremely surprised that my partner and I qualified to advance to the international level. We wanted nothing more than to continue on competing at ICDC, but as we stood up on stage an overwhelming feeling of surprise enveloped me as they called out our names,” Toobi said.

In addition, prior to the competition, DECA students were able to receive Thrive Academy spots. They are required to do two campaigns, which included the community service campaign and the promotional campaign.

The community service consists of holding one or more community service activity in the month of November. For this campaign, DECA held an Autism Speaks Awareness Assembly, which was successful, according to Koshy.

The promotional campaign consisted of three school outreach activities, three success stories about DECA alumni and three community service outreach activities all in the month of November. After completing these campaigns, three spots were allotted at ICDC that will receive leadership training.

Koshy believes that DECA teaches students necessary skills that can be beneficial to any career that may be chosen.

“DECA competitions are extremely beneficial to all members, as it gives competitors a chance to exhibit their business, speaking, and performance skills in a way not otherwise available to the average high school student through their competitions around the country,” Koshy said.

Advisor Alberta Wilder was delighted to hear that her students will continue on to ICDC.

“Since I’m retiring, this is a bittersweet moment because I treat these DECA students as if they are my children and I will miss them dearly,” Wilder said.

The International Career Development Conference (ICDC) will be held in Anaheim from April 24-27.