by Matt Bedker and Nick Ramsett
On April 26 nine DeForest students and their advisor John Webster departed for the trip of a lifetime to the 66th annual DECA International Career Development Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah. The students who went on to the international conference worked hard all year to get there by first competing at the District conference, and then finishing top seven at the State career conference. DeForest had students competing individually, in team events, and with written projects.
The students took a 25-hour bus ride with the Waunakee, Sun Prairie and Mt. Horeb chapters. Senior Matt Bedker was quoted as saying “The bus ride was pure excitement, I was filled with adrenaline and couldn’t wait to get there”. Once the students arrived they were taken away by the breathtaking views of snow-capped mountains. The opening session at Energy Solutions Arena was electrically filled with nearly 15,000 students from around the globe all demonstrating the spirit of DECA and marketing education. During this session, George Zimmer the CEO of Men’s Warehouse, spoke, and the winner of America’s Best Dance Crew, The Jabbawockeez, performed.
In the days after that students competed in their events. Sophomore William Peters said “The competition is tough at the international level”. After all the students put forth their best effort and the competitions were done, the closing session was held and they started on their bus ride home. “It was something I will never forget. I’m so glad I got the chance to experience so much through DECA,” said senior Britney LaTour.
DeForest did not have any competitors place at the conference, however, the experience and knowledge gained is invaluable. This was the last leadership conference for seniors to attend. Senior Nick Ramsett stated, “This was a fantastic way to end my DECA career. The new restaurants, people and scenery are things I will never forget. I cannot thank this organization enough for the personal and professional development it has given me.” If you would like more information about marketing education and DECA, please contact John Webster at DeForest Area High School.