DECA attends Leadership Development and Competitive Excellence Conference

%0D%0A%0D%0ASilicon+Valley+DECA+members+listen+as+motivational+speaker+Scott+Greenberg+delivers+a+presentation+on+his+experience+with+overcoming+adversity+and+learning+from+failure%2C+specifically+his+experience+surviving+cancer.++Photo+used+with+permission+of+MVDECA.

Silicon Valley DECA members listen as motivational speaker Scott Greenberg delivers a presentation on his experience with overcoming adversity and learning from failure, specifically his experience surviving cancer. Photo used with permission of MVDECA.

Eva Spitzen

Starting DECA season with an event hosted by Silicon Valley DECA, members of MVDECA attended the Leadership Development and Competitive Excellence Conference at the San Francisco Airport Marriott in Burlingame from Nov. 16 to Nov. 18. Though nine DECA chapters attended the event, including more than 400 members, almost half of the attendees were from MVHS. Although Silicon Valley leadership conferences have been held in the past, LDCEC was the first to be held overnight. The goal of the conference was to acquaint new members and chapters to DECA, while giving members the opportunity to improve their networking and competitive skills.


Silicon Valley DECA members listen as motivational speaker Scott Greenberg delivers a presentation on his experience with overcoming adversity and learning from failure, specifically his experience surviving cancer. Photo used with permission of MVDECA.

LCDEC began with an opening ceremony on Friday night , during which Silicon Valley DECA officers introduced themselves and motivational speaker Scott Greenberg delivered an interactive presentation focused on overcoming adversity and maneuvering obstacles. Greenberg, a cancer survivor who now owns a branch of Edible Arrangements, delivers such presentations across the country. The following day, entrepreneur Rob Salaverry gave an example business pitch to all attendees and later, members were able to choose one instructional track for the remainder of the day, including Marketing, Finance, Entrepreneurship and Intro to DECA. All tracks were led by a combination of MVDECA and Silicon Valley DECA officers. The night ended with a dance, at which members were able to participate in a dance contest in an attempt to win free pizza. The last morning included a breakfast provided by Silicon Valley DECA and a closing ceremony.

“I think that overall the conference was very successful,” said Vice President of Public Relations of MVDECA junior Amanda Fong. “The freshmen that were there got a good feeling for what DECA conferences are like, and returning members were able to gain a lot of insight into how to succeed in competitions this year.”

The leadership development conference being the only non-competitive conference of the year, MVDECA has a full year ahead. During the remainder of the year, MVDECA will be attending the Silicon Valley Career Development Conference in January, the California Career Development Conference in March in Santa Clara and finally the International Career Development Conference, or ICDC, in early May in Anaheim. MVDECA hopes to once again finish first in the world competitively at ICDC, as they did last year.

“We won first place at ICDC last year and [this year’s] LDCEC was meant to kickstart the path to doing that again,” said Director of Operations Research Events junior Jessica Ho. “I think that it was definitely a great start for both new and returning members.”