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Suiting up for DECA states

Jack Martin ’25
Paul Kaminski ’24, Johnny Klepp ’25, Jack Martin ’25, Joseph Drawbaugh ’24 (the first four on the left) and Henry Doyle ’25 (on the right) competing in DECA regionals.

After an intense round of Districts, South’s DECA team prepares for their upcoming States competition. Twelve members from South’s team qualified, and are now busily preparing for the next level. The States competition will occur next month on March 13 through 15.

DECA is an organization that allows students to participate in business role-plays and get hands-on experience with marketing, finance, hospitality and entrepreneurship. Members of DECA choose an event like retail merchandising, sports marketing, etc., and take online tests along with competing in-person role-play activities which are then scored by a judge. It all starts with practice sessions at meetings in the room of DECA advisor George Formicola. Formicola said that the best way to prepare for these competitions is to have a multitude of resources available.

“Students have access to a website where they can do practice runs and practice tests,” Formicola said, “They also have the option to review alone or with their peers.”

Jack Martin ’25 and Johnny Klepp ’25 are two of the twelve members who will be moving on to the States competition. Martin said to prepare for competitions he reviewed prompts and situations from previous years.

“It’s hard to predict the situation that will be given,” Martin said, “I made sure to be comfortable with all types of prompts for my event.”

During competitions, students have to think on the spot because they do not get their scenarios ahead of time. Klepp said this can often be difficult to then try and prove his point to the judge while attempting to incorporate important attributes to get the best score possible.

“The most challenging part would be adapting to the situation we are put in,” Klepp said, “With such limited time to analyze the prompt, it makes it difficult to create a solution to any problems that are presented.”

However, for many students, it is not their first time competing in districts and states as they have been members of the club for multiple years.

“Last year’s experience definitely helped me not only be more confident but more familiar with the situations DECA participants are put in,” Martin said.

Although DECA has its challenges, it is also very beneficial to students and teaches them important life skills that they will carry with them through life, says Formicola.

“DECA allows students to get a glimpse of what it’s like to be in the professional business world before leaving high school,” Formicola said, “It’s a really good opportunity for them to see what professionalism is.”

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Ruby Berger '25
Ruby Berger '25, Page Editor
Scoring goals on the field after having aced all her tests that day, Ruby Berger ’25 coming in hot as a first-year page editor.Berger said she spends lots of her time on the field hockey field as she is on the varsity team. What's more is, over the summer she worked as a babysitter and danced competitively for Mack Avenue Dance Center. Berger’s whole life, she has been interested in keeping up with the news, so she is thrilled to bring that to other people through her own voice.“Journalism really is the best way to keep yourself informed,” Berger said. “I’m so excited to learn new things and build whole new skills: writing and page editing for The Tower.”

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