Pentucket DECA Team Qualifies for State-Wide Competition


Image Source: Pentucket DECA Team

Hannah Linehan, Assistant Editor

While the 2020-21 DECA season has posed many challenges due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, Pentucket students have used these obstacles to drive their determination to succeed. Although all of the rounds of competition have been moved online, Pentucket’s DECA team has had a great start to the year.

Out of the 15 students who are currently members of Pentucket’s DECA group, 12 placed in the top five spots of their categories. With the other three students going to participate in the QuizBowl, all the group’s members will be moving on to the state-wide competition. This is a new high for Pentucket’s group in both membership and state-competition acceptance. 

Image Source: Pentucket DECA Team

The district round of competition, which is usually held at Merrimack College in North Andover, took place virtually throughout the week of January 3rd. Prior to submitting their final products, students had time to take tests, prepare essays, create presentations, and deliver recorded speeches for judgment. 

Madison Estes, Pentucket’s DECA supervisor and coordinator, is extremely proud of her students as they follow in her footsteps of DECA success. Estes herself competed in DECA events when she was in high school and is a crucial figure in the success of the team. She says, “Watching the Pentucket DECA students adapt from an in-person conference for the last few years to doing everything virtual this year was truly rewarding as an advisor […] I could not be more proud!”

Image Source: Pentucket DECA Team

DECA provides classes for students in various fields that help them not only prepare for projects but for the future. Currently, Pentucket does not have any DECA courses, which makes it all the more impressive that these students have placed so highly with just their own knowledge. “It has been really challenging to not have the proper resources and classes to prepare us for competition,” says Ava Spencer, a junior.  However, the students do a lot of their own research and studying to try to get the best leg up on the competition.

“It is a little disappointing that, even though we have worked hard to move on to states, we will not get to stay in Boston where it is usually held,” said Tristain Bukow, another junior. Bukow voices the opinions of many students’ thoughts as the regularly scheduled trip to the Marriot Copley and Sheraton Boston hotels has been reworked into a virtual event. However, these students will not let this change stop them from presenting at their very best.

Image Source: Pentucket DECA Team

Now it is time for the students to evaluate the feedback from their district-level presentations and revise their projects to take a shot at making it to the international competition, the International Career Development Conference. Below is a list of all the placements of Pentucket’s members in their categories. The top seven out of each category move on to states, but many of the members exceeded that and placed within the top three. Estes encapsulates this great season for Pentucket as she says, “Each year we continue to have more students place top seven at states… an incredible accomplishment for such a small DECA chapter!”