Four Bay-Arenac Career Center students qualified for an international competition held in April

Four students from the Bay-Arenac ISD Career Center recently competed at the International Career Development Conference (ICDC) held in Anaheim, Calif., alongside over 20,000 other DECA members.

Dereon Campbell, Marin Arnold, Isaiah Ciesla, and Olivia Maurer are the DECA students from the Career Center who competed at the April 27-30 conference. All four are in the Marketing & Management program.

Olivia Maurer (Photo courtesy of the Bay-Arenac ISD Career Center)DECA is a student club dedicated to preparing emerging leaders and entrepreneurs in high schools and colleges worldwide for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality, and management. More than 200,000 students around the world are involved in DECA.

It’s just one of the career and technical clubs at the Career Center. The Career Center also offers students the chance to participate in SkillsUSA, HOSA-Future Health Professionals, Business Professionals of America (BPA), and the National Future Farmers of America Organization (FFA.)

Marketing & Management Adviser Lisa Forrest diligently prepared her class of students to compete in the DECA conference, ensuring full participation in the district conference. Eight students advanced from districts to the State Career Development Conference, with four moving onward to ICDC.

Forrest's efforts in preparing her class for these prestigious competitions paid off, offering valuable opportunities for junior and senior students from the Great Lakes Bay Region to represent Bay City and the Bay-Arenac Career Center.

A team of Campbell, Arnold, and Ciesla participated in the Chapter Awards Program at the State Career Development Conference held in Detroit in March. They advanced to the international conference following their successful presentations, which promoted our school and program to a panel of official judges.

I, Olivia Maurer, competed solo in the Merit Awards Project, promoting my writing and personal experiences in Economics, Human Relations, Marketing, Promotion, and Product Service Knowledge. I presented to a group of official judges at both the state and international career development conferences.

Dereon Campbell (Garber High School), Isaiah Ciesla (Garber High School), and Marin Arnold (Garber High School) qualified for the International Career Development Conference held in California last week. (Photo courtesy of the Bay-Arenac ISD) On the first day of ICDC, we were welcomed with an opening ceremony featuring DECA celebrity speeches and entertainment from the America's Got Talent Dance Group, "The Jabbawockeez." The ceremony introduced us to the presidents from every state and country, along with the expectations to be upheld as DECA members.

On the second day of DECA, we got ready for our projects by attending orientation sessions and handing in our written projects for review before presenting them to the judges. We also practiced our speeches and presentations to get ready for the competition.

On the third day of ICDC, it was competition day, where each group presented their projects and the hard work that brought them to where they stood at ICDC. Later that day, the awards ceremony was held for the international winners, who took home DECA glass trophies.

Graphic courtesy of the Bay-Arenac ISD Career CenterOn the final day of ICDC, an awards ceremony was held to honor the national winners, followed by a closing ceremony to wrap up DECA ICDC 2024.

Throughout the conference and competitions, the students' efforts paid off with the connections they made at both the state and international levels. Meeting people from all over the world, they traded pins from different places and made valuable connections with future entrepreneurs and business leaders.

While the students of Bay-Arenac ISD Career Center didn't secure DECA glass trophies, they achieved remarkable scores and delivered outstanding performances in their events.

Each student did a great job representing Bay City.

Enjoy this story? Sign up for free solutions-based reporting in your inbox each week.