Hillcat Corner Store Takes Gold while Hillsboro Deering’s virtual business retail team secures third place.

The Orange County Convention Center recently hosted the International Career Development Conference (ICDC) of DECA from April 22nd to April 25th. This year’s conference was attended by nearly 22,000 DECA members from all 50 provinces of Canada, Spain, Italy, Japan, China, the Dominican Republic, and Brazil. Among them, 13 members of Hillsboro Deering High School’s DECA team participated in the competition.

The HD DECA team did exceptionally well, ranking third overall in the competition. Being among the top ten teams indicates a high level of competitiveness. A team consisting of Jack Harrington (sophomore), Noah Harrington (freshman), and Manny Velázquez (senior) participated in the Virtual Business Retail Management competition, where they won $28,614,093 over two rounds—and were the second-ranked team, only $2,000,000 behind the first-ranked Virginia team.

In Hillcat Corner, the school-based enterprise competition, fourth-graders Alexis Ledvina, Madison Ledvina, and junior Isabel Swirko earned Gold Certification for School-Based Enterprises on behalf of their chapter. This is the 16th consecutive year that the chapter has received this award. Other HD DECA team members included Owyn Turner (senior), Kyle Nicklaus (junior), Mason Felwelda (Thrive Academy), Mya Brochu (Ignite Academy), Ben Perrin (sophomore), Madison Puckett (Thrive Academy), and Eva Contreras (freshman).

The team got to visit Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Epcot, Disney Springs, and Universal Studios when they had time. DECA’s membership numbered over 220,000 this year, with 22,000 attendees at ICDC. Merely by qualifying, these students have made it into the top 10%. Finishing third overall is a significant achievement for this small school.

HD DECA Advisor Marc Peilleur is proud of his students and highly appreciated their backers. The chapter has expressed gratitude to the Duncan Jenkins Trust, Henniker Rotary, Laura Buono, Dorothy Martin, and those who chose to remain anonymous for their contributions to this successful endeavor. He also thanked those who bought pizza or attended their Easter Movie Night and congratulated their continued support for HD DECA.

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