By Jacob Bertram, Collegiate DECA Vice President
On February 27 and 28, Collegiate DECA students and our advisor, Becky Shand, traveled to Arrowwood Resort in Alexandria, MN where the State Collegiate DECA Conference was held. 150 college students from all across MN participated in the state Career Development Conference. The afternoon of the 27th kicked off with guest speaker, Phil Geertsema of ADP, and he shared with us how to ‘Plan to Build Your Dreams’. Great inspiration to begin our event.
Then it was off to the first round of the DECA Business events competition. The students who competed included Alicia Berg, Matt Evans, Nelson Anderson, Sam Lo, Lydia Green and Jacob Bertram, each competing in two business events. With the first round of events over, it was time to hit up the waterpark, yes, a waterpark. The Big Splash Waterpark located next to the resort was open exclusively for Collegiate DECA students to de-stress and have some fun! Some serious competitions among DECA members happened in the body water slide, with Jacob Betram coming out with the top speed.
Off came the swim suits and back into the professional suits to attend the Collegiate DECA CDC evening opening session. SCTCC Collegiate DECA President, Matt Evans received the Outstanding Student Service Award for his time and dedication to our DECA chapter. We then welcomed the keynote speaker, Jill Blashack Strahan, founder of Tastefully Simple in Alexandria. She shared her background and how she got to where she is today, much of which she contributed to her Marketing and Sales Management degree from Alex Tech and her DECA experiences. She went through many hardships in life but still pursued her dream of starting and running her business.
On to day two where we advanced on to the final rounds of the competition. After all the competitive events were complete it was time to see who is advancing on to Collegiate DECA Internationals in Atlanta, GA in April. The moment we all had been waiting for, the results of our hard work and efforts. Our team sat on the edge of our chairs along with 150 other DECA Members to see who would be advancing on to DECA Internationals. The time had come, and the outstanding results are listed below:
Professional Sales Event:
- Matthew Evans - 1st Place Award
- Jacob Bertram - Top 10 Award
- Nelson Anderson - Top 10 Award
Sports and Entertainment Team Event:
- Lydia Green and Matthew Evans – Top 10 Award
- Nelson Anderson and Jacob Bertram – Top 10 Award
- Alicia Berg – Top 10 Award
Let’s say SCTCC will be well represented in Atlanta, Georgia in April. SCTCC swept the floor and placed top 10 in several of the toughest competitions. Our team was so excited and proud of everyone who competed.
Universally the team really enjoyed the conference and here is what the DECA Team Members had to say about their accomplishments. “At the conference I feel we really came together as a group and we all were there for each other,” said Alicia Berg. Matt Evans, a Sales Management Marketing student also explained, “As a group we like to give each other a lot of heck, but at the end of the day we all support each other. It was really hard not to scream and shout when they called my name but I had to keep it business professional,” added Evans after placing first in Professional Sales. It was pretty special to win first place for myself and Becky, since she put a lot of time and effort to teach us how to compete and it’s the least we could do.” Nelson Anderson, a SMM student added, “I had a wonderful time at the CDC state meet last week. I got to meet many new people, made some new friends, and made some future connections.” Sam Lo, another SMM student stated, “I enjoyed listening to the keynote speakers; people who are successful and already doing good work in the business industry. It was a mindful and humbling experience, learning and hearing from them was priceless information to me to use in the near future.”
When asked how you feel about your students winning, Becky Shand was excited. “I was so proud of the students that I wanted to do cartwheels up and down the aisles.” Shand then added, “It doesn’t matter if you win, it matters if you challenged yourself personally and professionally and that’s all that counts.” “DECA isn’t just about winning, it’s about bettering yourself as an individual and preparing yourself for the business field,” added SCTCC DECA President, Matt Evans.
The International Collegiate DECA Conference is April 21-26 in Atlanta, GA. On behalf of the Collegiate DECA Officer Team Matthew Evans, Sam Lo, Alicia Berg, and Jacob Bertram, we would like to thank the business professionals who helped us practice our events. Without you we wouldn’t be as successful in our competition. And last but certainly not least, we would like to thank our advisor, coach, and second mom, Becky Shand, for her outstanding service and dedication to our Collegiate DECA chapter. Hopefully you will see the DECA team wearing their shinny ‘gold medals’ after the 2020 Collegiate DECA International Conference.