DECA flies into Florida for Internationals


Photo by Allison Xu

The seven students (from left to right) Amanda Simesnky, Frans Rejsjo, Daniela Znam, Allison Xu, Yashuwini Jaykubar, Brett Wall, and Jordan Block are at the BWI airport ready to fly out to Orlando for a good time at DECA ICDC.

Representing a love of economics, marketing and entrepreneurship, DECA, WJ’s business club, is where anyone can gain real-world experience, connect/network with business professionals and discover new passions.
Following up on their success at States in Baltimore, April 22 to 25, eight juniors traveled to Orlando, Florida to compete in DECA International Career Development Conference (ICDC). Allison Xu, Daniela Znam, Brett Wall, Amanda Simensky, Frans Rejsjoe, Yashu Jayakumar and Jordan Block competed against more than 20,000 high school students, along with teachers, business professionals and alumni from all over the country.
Among the eight qualifying members, two of them, Xu and Znam, were returning members who had already experienced ICDC last year. Last year they traveled to Atlanta, Georgia. With more representatives from WJ, both students expressed their enthusiasm and excitement for the upcoming competition.
“ICDC was even better this year, especially since it was in Orlando. It was great to have so many new members representing WJ. Definitely, the more, the merrier. Internationals embodies what DECA is really about: networking, leadership, innovation, and of course, fun. I’m really proud of how much our club has grown this year and I hope we can inspire even more people to join us next year,” Znam said.
The rest of the six members who were new to the ICDC world, had mixed feelings of nervousness and excitement, but the team pulled through to do their best in representing WJ.
“It was so incredible and exciting to be able to have this experience. I learned so much and met so many people from so many different places. It was also so cool to be able to represent WJ and show our Maryland spirit,” Block said.
Most of the preparation for ICDC consisted of doing much role play and preparing for likely scenarios to debate in during their weekly meetings to hone their skills. The students each individually prepared in their own way for ICDC.
“I searched up a bunch of multiple choice practice tests to prepare and I went up to my friends and gave them role play presentations just like practice ones,” Jayakumar said.
Along with the intense competition, the team was also able to enjoy their time in Orlando by going to Disney World. Overall, the team had a great time representing WJ in such a nation-wide event and hope for more members and students to come in continuing years.
“It was a great atmosphere in Orlando and I’m really proud of how far we got considering the relatively few members we had this year. Since there were so many other schools all at DECA we found a lot of new friends in our county and from entirely new countries. It’s a great experience to meet new people that have similar interests and goals as you,” Rejsjoe said.