Mercer Island DECA students earn trip to state competition

Mercer Island High School’s DECA program announced that 38 students have qualified for the DECA state competition from March 6-8 in Bellevue, Wash. Twenty-two more students who entered written and international business plans are still under consideration and will be announced at the end of the month.

The DECA students are taught by a team of Mercer Island staff, including Kristine Van der Heaven, Shasta Ray, Andrea Confalone, Jen McClellan, Susan Sutherin and Hana Nguyen.

“I am so proud of our DECA students. They showed up at this pressure-cooker competition where they were asked to think on their feet and present their business solutions to a panel of business professionals,” said McClellan. “They were insightful, knowledgeable, creative and smart. Many adults would struggle with this type of competition and our students deeply impressed the judges.”

DECA is an international association of high school and college students and teachers that prepares emerging leaders and entrepreneurs for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality and management. Washington DECA is the fifth largest DECA association in the world with more than 10,000 student members.

In December and January, students competed in each of 11 regions throughout the state. In region three, 38 students from Mercer Island were among the top winners in several events, winning the right to compete at Washington DECA’s State Career Development Conference. At the competition in Bellevue, students will vie for the opportunity to attend the DECA International Career Development Conference in Atlanta in May.

These competitive events allow students to demonstrate their learning in the areas of business, marketing, entrepreneurship and management. Judges evaluate students on their presentations and written projects of real-world business situations covering a variety of industries.

The announced winners from Mercer Island High School are:

Financial Services - 1st Peter Mahony and Kevin Bernstein

Hospitality Services - 6th Ashlyn Reid and Maddie Roer

Sports and Entertainment Marketing - 8th Ben Dewhurst

Entrepreneurship Innovation - 8th Charlie Williams and Calvin Lee

Sports and Entertainment Promotion Plan - 1st Meredith Thieme, 2nd Adrienne Suhm and Nathan Gallitan

Quick Serve Restaurant Management - 5th Brad Kimball

Business Finance - 4th Brett Bottomley, 6th Megan Lee

Marketing Communications - 4th Paige Brandon and Ashley Sun, 9th Maya Newman and Sarah Hanan

Human Resources - 4th Jacob Pruchno

Automotive Services - 7th Rachel Lee

Restaurant and Food Services - 1st Sara Federman, 3rd Sean Kerawala, 9th Yaritza Encarnacion

Food Marketing - 4th Shay Casady

Travel and Tourism - 5th Sasan Salman and Michael Krebs

Ad Campaign - 3rd Jane Peterson, 4th Amanda Wall and Dana He, 6th Delaney Clark and Madeline Kantor

Marketing Management - 1st Sydney Zeldes

Hotel and Lodging Management - 1st Sydney Lopes, 7th Chloe Keller

Sports and Entertainment - 2nd Mackenzie Krause and Sarah Bjarnason

Accounting - 1st Alex Banbury, 2nd Allison Rosenman

Retail Merchandising - 7th Lynden Lam


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