ICDC in Review- TJ’s May Blog Entry

Friday, April 27th marked the start of DECA’s International Career Development Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah. During that day and the next, nearly 16,000 DECA competitors, members, and advisors traversed to Salt Lake in anticipation of DECA’s largest conference.
On that day I traveled along with countless others to Salt Lake by plane connecting through Minneapolis and Denver airports. In both places, everywhere I turned was DECA. I was incredibly proud of our organization. Late Friday night, thousands of DECA students settled into more than 60 hotels throughout the city. Their journey to the summit was still ahead of them- they needed rest.
On Saturday morning, nearly one thousand runners took part in DECA’s Dash With the Diamonds 5k marathon. The marathon raised thousands for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. After the 5k, Saturday was DECA’s fun day for members. Thousands more members flooded a local amusement park, while others (including Proctor!) traversed up mountains for some sightseeing. At dusk members filed into the Energy Solutions arena for a stellar opening session that featured China’s own Peaking Acrobats and the Jabbawockeez. At the close of the session, students filed back to their hotels to prefect presentations and study for exams.
Sunday morning was the start of testing. Sunday was just DECA’s day of testing. While individual and team competitors were busy testing, all of the presenters spent their days practicing and perfecting every annunciation of every word for the judges.
Monday was the big day for most. It was round one of competition everyone filed into the convention center for their shot at advancing out of their section into finals.
Tuesday the biggest day of them all. At 8am the preliminary award session began. In order to make it past prelims, one had to be one of the top two competitors in their section (which had around 20 people in it). Advancing to finals means that one was already one of the top sixteen competitors in the world. The top two competitors in each section the competed for top honors. If you think about it- statistically, you have a better chance of being struck by lightning then winning nationals. Think of how each person that advanced to nationals beat out everyone in district and state competitions. It is insane, and that is another reason I am so incredibly proud of our organization.

DECA beats them all.

~TJ Lind is the Vice President of Special Projects at Minnesota DECA, an association of marketing students.