On Tuesday, Dec. 17, 2019, 36 Hill School students traveled to the Crowne Plaza Hotel in King of Prussia, Pa. to participate in the DECA District competition. Seven teams competed from the district - which includes the area from Pottstown to Norristown - and Hill qualified 33 students for the State competition to be held in Hershey, Pa. in February 2020.
DECA is a co-curricula business competition that works with the business programs of many schools across the country (and Canada). There are 19 individual events and eight team events across a wide range of business areas. The scoring is based on a written exam (in the field relevant to the event, ranging from Finance and Marketing, to Hospitality and Tourism), and a role playing situation that the student finds out about only a few minutes before going in front of a judge, who is an expert in that area.
Individual trophies and medals
In the individual events, newcomers Corbin Cartagine ‘23 and Taylor Folk ‘22 led the way with first place trophies, in Principles of Finance and Principles of Marketing, respectively. Corbin received a medal for having the top test score, and Taylor got two medals for both top test score and top role play.
Earning second place trophies were Mallika Saluja ‘21 (Apparel and Accessories), Colin Meng ’20 (Hotel and Lodging Management), and Jerry Li ’22 (Principles of Finance). Mallika also earned a high role play medal.
Third place trophies were awarded to Taylor Owens ’20 (Apparel and Accessories), Yoseph Kim ’22 (Automotive Services), Philippe Jin ’21 (Business Finance), Sarah Jiang ’22 (Hotel and Lodging Management), and Dev Sharma ’22 (Principles of Marketing).
Earning medals and qualifying for States by finishing in sixth place or better were: Tina Wang '22 (Business Finance); Cassidy Beeding ’21 and Aine Farrell ‘22 (Entrepreneurship); Derek Schmaeling ’21 and Nari Tung ’21 (Personal Financial Literacy); Lal Yatagan ’21 and Sarah Wisneski ’21 (Principles of Hospitality); Stephen Chen ’21 (Marketing Communications); and Bella Patel ’22 (Principles of Business Management).
Team trophies and medals
The team of David Chow ’21 and Brandon Kim ’21 took first place in Travel and Tourism, while also earning medals for having both the top test scores and the top role play.
The team of Lindsey Coffey '20 and Jenny Li ’20 had a very different road in Hospitality Services. Not having had the highest test or role play score usually relegates one to hope for a third or fourth place finish. As the places were counting down from six, five, four, three, two... excitement turned to despair, until first place was announced and despair turned to extreme excitement for Lindsay and Jenny!
In addition to two first place teams, there were two second place place teams: Samir Khan ’21 and Leo Li ’22 (Financial Services, along with top test score) and Trent Charlton ’21 and Kyle Sullivan ’21 (Marketing Management, as well as top test score).
Teams placing third and earning trophies were Billy Gussler ’21 and Brad Tobias ’21 (Sports and Entertainment Marketing) and Mariel Pearson ’20 and Esha Sharma ’20 (Travel and Tourism).
Qualifying for States in the fourth place position was the team of Jamie Olson ’21 and Matt Benik ’21 (Financial Services).
The DECA State Career Development Conference will be held at the Hershey Lodge in Hershey, Pa. on February 19-21, 2020. Some 2,000 students from all over Pennsylvania will be competing in more than 50 events, with the top four in each event moving on to Nationals, which will be in Nashville, Tenn. this year.