By Rayne Hayes
After making history at the State Career Development Conference (SCDC) back in February, 13 DECA students along with over 19,000 other students from all around the world traveled to Atlanta, Georgia on April 20 to compete in the International Career Development Conference.
On Saturday, attendees visited Six Flags where they enjoyed a day under the sun riding roller coasters. Afterward, all the conference members met at the Mercedes Benz Arena for the opening ceremony introducing all the states and countries involved in the conference.
“As a second year SCDC finalist I have discovered that my favorite part of ICDC is not only the location but the thousands of people you network with,” Monet Griffin, junior, said.
Thousands of kids crowded downtown to tour the Georgia Aquarium to view the aquatic animals after which they headed across the street to the World of Coca-Cola. Atlanta’s beloved soft drink, Coca-Cola, allowed DECA to rent out their headquarters, as well as the aquarium, for students to enjoy the venues privately. There they indulged in Cola’s from across the world and learned about the history behind the soft drink.
All participants gathered at the Georgia Tech Conference center on Monday to present their research operations and roleplays. The International Conference was separated into many operations in which students presented in different subcategories. In each subcategory there were 16-20 participants presenting for each judge, and only two would move on to the finals.
There was a ceremony to award those who would be progressing. No Cougs were recognized, but there were many other Las Vegas locals recognized for their presentations.
“At first, Rayne and I were a little upset because we had worked so hard on our project, however, the experience itself was so amazing and even making it this far is impressive,” Sophia Potamitis, sophomore, said.
Although none of the SCDC winners progressed, eight of the students received an award of excellence meaning that they scored 70% or above on their written, roleplay, or test. These eight students were sophomores Megan King, Jaden Snyder, Abigail Spencer, and Dylan Phung, freshmen, Bridgette Podlesni, Steve Vott, and Joshua Mcdermott, and senior Nolan Phan.
They spent the last day on an exclusive tour, set up by their adviser, Mr. Bromberg, of Moxie headquarters, an advertising agency.
“I am so proud of the work these students did this week,” Bromberg, DECA advisor, said. “Whether they noticed it or not I watched each and every one of them grow as an individual as they challenged themselves to try new things, embark on new adventures, and learn about business.”