Sauk Rapids-Rice High School advanced marketing students recently had the opportunity to compete in a virtual DECA competition called The Power Experience during the last week of November.
The Distributive Education Clubs of America, or DECA as it is commonly known, is an association that encourages student development in business and leadership through academic conferences and competitions. Sauk Rapids-Rice High School has a long tradition in the organization and offers students the chance to build skills—even as that learning takes on a different look and feel right now.
DECA advisor Josh Bauer explains: “In DECA, we compete. That’s what we do! The Power Experience was a great opportunity for my students to compete during the pandemic. We are constantly preparing to showcase what we learn in the classroom.”
Each student who competed in The Power Experience completed a 100-question marketing exam and participated in a marketing role play and case study. The timed exams were 60 minutes long and included subject areas in marketing, communications, operations, channel management and more. The role playing part of the competition saw students utilize a brand new software platform created by DECA. They had 10 minutes to review a case study and prepare notes and then had another 10 minutes to record responses and showcase visual aids. Judges evaluated the students on their ability to problem-solve, communicate, apply business and marketing knowledge and use creativity.
Jack O’Brien, a junior at Sauk Rapids-Rice High School and DECA competitor, said this of the experience: “It was great to see how I placed amongst my peers from across the country. I learned a lot from the role plays in regards to communication skills. The tests really gave me an opportunity to see how much I have learned and how much more there is to learn. In having to do this online, I really had to focus on a general audience instead of working with who was simply in front of me.”
O’Brien and senior Isabelle Birk placed in the top ten percent of nearly 900 DECA students in the exam portion of the competition. Senior Brynn Seaman, along with juniors Hailee Cullen, Ethan Mohs, William Nielsen and O’Brien, placed in the top ten percent in the role playing competition.
Hailee Cullen summed up the experience by saying, “The DECA Power Experience was a cool opportunity to use what we have been learning in the classroom and apply it to real competition. We were able to get direct feedback from the judges. It was a fun experience to be able to use our knowledge and skills to compete against kids all across the country.”
Congratulations to our Storm DECA students. We are proud of your hard work and accomplishments in The Power Experience competition!