All 52 DECA members qualify for state


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DECA gathered for their annual awards on Jan. 24. All 52 members qualified for state.

Jonny Clubb, Writer

On Jan. 24 DECA held their annual awards ceremony in the OHS Auditorium. DECA members competed in the District 1 competition virtually Jan. 6-13. All 52 members qualified for the state competition over more than 20 events, including team and individual role plays, start-up business plans and marketing campaigns. This is the first time in program history that every member qualified for the state competition.

DECA offers a hands-on introduction into the business world. Junior DECA member Cael Dowling said, “It’s a great hands-on experience that you don’t get to have in any classes.” Members get to learn about business in an interactive way, as well as help the community.

In years past members would compete by presenting or performing in front of a judge and then answering their questions at the end. This year, however, participants had to record their role plays and turn them into a judge. This caused some advantages and some disadvantages. DECA Adviser Mr. Scott Pierce said, “In your roleplay, you didn’t get as nervous because you didn’t have somebody sitting across from you.  Also, kids that are good at thinking on their feet and answering questions, and are really personable can really set themselves apart. It can be good for some, but it can also hurt others.”

DECA is a group of marketing students who are working on their leadership, marketing, and entrepreneurial skills.”

— DECA Press Release

Usually, state qualifiers would earn “points” by doing community service to earn the privilege of going to the state competition in Minneapolis. This year many service opportunities are still available, but the state competition will be held virtually. Senior and DECA Officer Jonny Wall said that his favorite thing he’s done in the community is the Cash Wise barbeque event for Youth 1st. DECA participants have had many other opportunities such as leaf raking as other service projects. 

To qualify for state DECA members have to finish in the top eight at districts. The state competition is generally held at a hotel in Minneapolis but will have to be held virtually this year.  At state, participants must finish in the top four to qualify for nationals. This year’s national competition would have been held in Anaheim, CA, but it has also been changed to a virtual event.

A press release put out by DECA said, “DECA is a group of marketing students who are working on their leadership, marketing, and entrepreneurial skills. The Owatonna Chapter has 52 members grades 9-12. The events at the conference involve roleplays, presentations, interviewing, and entrepreneurship and marketing ideas.”  DECA’s state competition will be held virtually March 7-9.