DECA students compete at state career development conference

Homestead%27s+DECA+team+gathers+for+a+photo+after+receiving+awards.

Submitted photo

Homestead's DECA team gathers for a photo after receiving awards.

As the second trimester of school came to a close, some students involved in Distributive Education Clubs of America, also known as DECA, earn spots to compete at the State Career Development Conference. DECA is a club focused on developing future entrepreneurs and business leaders.

Several Homestead DECA students competed in the state career development conference from March 10-12 in Lake Geneva. Students were able to compete using their own projects, role plays, and tests. They saw this as an amazing opportunity to showcase what they had been working on for months, and for the seniors, this was their last competition.

Dylan Bradley, senior, thought the event was successful and was happy with the end results.

“The event itself went very well. Those we did bring did very well, but because we were limited to bringing nine competitors of our about 40-person chapter, many competent and capable members were left behind. While at the event itself, we really strove to keep a balance between having fun and focusing on competition. On the competition side, we dedicated a lot of time to final preparation which paid off for many of our members,” Bradley said.

This year was the second time Homestead took home a first place trophy, expanding its collection from one to many this year.

“Drew Braaten and Zack Zens earned first place in their partner event of ‘Entrepreneurship Team Decision Making,’ Rohan Kaushal earned first place in ‘Automotive Services,’ and I earned First Place in ‘Quick Serve Restaurant Management’. First place at state is significant as it means beating out about 20 other State-level competitors, as well as many lower-level competitors eliminated at Districts. It is remarkable for Homestead to take home first place in three events, as many chapters much larger than ourselves had no first place winners at all. We had almost a 50% rate of first place winners, and I would venture to guess we were the most successful chapters per competitor in attendance,” Bradley further explained.

Other competitors such as Zack Zens, senior, thought this event was an exceptional way to end his time on the DECA team at Homestead.

“This conference was a fantastic last representation in our DECA career. I cherished the moments I shared with my fellow teammates and the bonds I was able to create with them. I feel that the seniors have left Homestead DECA with an incredibly capable group of future upperclassmen,” Zens stated.

Rohan Kaushal, senior, was happy with the final outcome but was disappointed that further competitions such as internationals are unable to happen.

“I’m very happy that I ended my senior year in DECA on the strongest note it’s ever been, even better than last year, but it’s definitely bittersweet because COVID-19 cancelled internationals,” Kaushal explained.