DECA attends state convention in Virginia Beach

Emma Defot, Staff Writer

Madison’s Distributive Education Clubs of America (DECA) team went to the Virginia Beach Convention Center on March 3 for the 78th Annual Virginia DECA competition where they competed with hundreds of other teams from throughout Virginia. DECA is an international club that prepares marketing students for careers in marketing, hospitality, finance, and management.

Competitions were split into two categories: projects and roleplay and took place on Saturday, March 3. Each team or individual had different competition times, ranging from 8:15 a.m. to 2 p.m. The conference room contained approximately 100 booths for role plays and competitions.   The competing process lasted about 1-2 hours, including waiting to compete and the judging process. Depending on the category, students were either judged on tests, presentations, or projects.

“I love DECA because of all the amazing opportunities and experiences that it provides,” Virginia State Officer Lauren Calhoun (’23) said. “Being a state officer has been so great because I can work to help members benefit in the same ways that I have. Our state leadership conference was such a success. Over 3,500 members attended and had a wonderful experience.”

Students were required to wear professional dress: knee length dresses and blazers for the girls, and suits and dress shoes for the boys. Throughout the three-day competition, Madison DECA attended three ceremonies: one opening, first group of awards, final awards and closing. These were held in a large conference room that held over three thousand people.

After events students were able to explore Virginia Beach, go shopping, and get some food. Dinners and the hotel were included in the trip cost, but breakfast and lunch were at students’ personal expense. On the final night all students attended the awards ceremony.

After a weekend of competitions and ceremonies, all students headed home early Sunday morning. 50% of students that competed with Madison qualified for internationals in April at Orlando, Florida.