By Jaquelyn McNamara, WCHS ’24

In the months leading up to Massachusetts DECA’s District 7 competition, our dedicated members studied and prepared tirelessly for their presentations. As they entered the DCU Center on January 10th and 11th–dressed head-to-toe in elaborate business attire and carrying their carefully crafted tri-fold boards–they felt nothing but readiness and anticipation.

The ceremony kicked off with the Massachusetts DECA chapter roll call, to which our members shouted and cheered as loudly as possible at the sound of Whitinsville Christian School being announced. After the energetic opening ceremony, students could attend various workshops, network with other schools, practice their presentations, and finally, compete.

DECA is split up into four categories: finance, marketing, management, and hospitality. However, there are over thirty specific categories to compete under, ranging from Sports and Entertainment Marketing, the Entrepreneurship series, Human Resource Management, Accounting Applications, and many more. Each student chooses one of these categories to compete in and either presents an off-the-cuff roleplay or a prepared project to their judges.

The DCU Center was bustling with hundreds of DECA students overcome with excitement and confidence after their very successful presentations. After the designated time to conduct these presentations ended, it was time for the awards ceremony. As each category was called, students across the auditorium held their breath with the hopes that they would take home a medal and qualify to compete at the state competition. One by one, WCS students were announced over the microphone as winners of their respective categories!

We are so proud of the fifteen qualifiers for the state’s Career Development Conference: Maddi Amati, Addison Boone and Scarlett Shaw, Dylan Brown, Zach Casey, Max DeFrancisco, Ethan Enoch, Ian Finch, Makenna Kitchen, Sean McGrath, Jaquelyn and Victoria McNamara, Logan O’Connell and Corbin Swaim, and Hannah Walton. These incredibly dedicated students were awarded for their hard work toward their projects, but also to the club itself. Those who didn’t bring home an award brought their all to their projects and are also recognized for their tremendous dedication to our DECA Chapter.

Those fifteen students aren’t the only ones attending the state competition, though! Shortly after districts, the school was awarded four spots to compete at the state level through the Mass-DECA Quiz Bowl team, where they will be challenged with answering business trivia questions while placed up against other schools in Massachusetts. Through an intense game that took place during one of our weekly DECA meetings, four students–Brady Gorman, John Kim, Pedro Ramos, and Grace Walton–were chosen to compete through Quiz Bowl at States!

We are excited to see our DECA members’ commitment shine through yet again at States in March! Until then, keep up the great work and continue practicing!