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Bay State College Hosts Massachusetts Collegiate DECA Statewide Competition

By on March 7, 2019
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On Saturday, February 16th, Bay State College proudly hosted the first ever Massachusetts Collegiate DECA Statewide Competition! More than 50 students from six Massachusetts colleges competed to qualify for the opportunity to represent Massachusetts DECA at the International Career Development Conference in April.

DECA prepares emerging leaders and entrepreneurs for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality and management in high schools and colleges around the globe.

Bay State College student, Larry Decastro, recaps his experience on February 16th below:

“My first experience at the first ever Mass Collegiate DECA State Competition was exhilarating! It was something to behold with all of the students in the room dressed for success and ready to make an impression. As the preparations for events started, the students gathered around the lounge area for directions and instructions on where to go and how events would play out. As the students walked through the halls, I couldn’t help but think we are future leaders of the world and we are here for a reason.

In this competition, I opted to do Travel and Tourism, simply for the reason of experience. I had done a DECA competition at Brockton High School in 2009 with the same event. Given a time limit of 30 minutes for prep time, I quickly went into my preparation room. There were people already in the room from other events that were in group competitions. They swiftly got their groups together and started planning after reading the case study. The others who chose individual events got prepared to make a competitive run for first place in their respective subject matters. After preparation time was done, the students went to meet with the judges for the event. As the only student representing Bay State College in this competition, I felt the need to do really well.

I got into the case study room where a couple of judges were there waiting for students to present their proposals and solutions to the case study. The judges looked very welcoming and smiled when I approached them. I shook hands with them and they told me to have a seat. The notes on the case study I had written were sufficient, but all in different thought bubbles. I had my thoughts all planned out, but I was still nervous. Being in front of anyone presenting is nerve-racking alone. The fact that I had so much time for preparation helped a lot though. After the presentations, the judges gave me quality feedback, and much needed constructive criticism. I appreciated that there was nothing but encouraging words in their explanations. I left the room and felt confident in my approach while eating the catered lunch. All of our judges came from the industries they evaluated.  Many very local and experienced in working with DECA at Bay State College.

The students gathered later when the events came to a close. Medals were awarded to the top four contestants in each category. The awards were announced by the conference organizer, Professor Elena Swaim, the DECA Chapter advisor at BSC and Massachusetts DECA Association Advisor.

The top four students in each category will now move on to represent Massachusetts DECA in the DECA ICDC in April.  I was pleased and honored to receive second place in my category! I was also glad to network and make the best of this experience!”

Congratulations Larry! The Bay State community is so proud of you!

Interested in DECA at Bay State? Contact deca@baystate.edu for more information.