Editor's Note: The Stoughton Chamber of Commerce and the Stoughton Golden Directory combined to donate $1,600 to the . SHS DECA students, with the help of adult chaperones, delivered this year's edition of the Golden Directory phone book.
The following is a letter from Stoughton Chamber of Commerce Chairman Chris Petrie, posted in the Chamber's monthly newsletter and shared with Stoughton Patch, about the Chamber's partnership with SHS DECA and his experience as a judge at a .
I want to first thank all of my fellow members and Board members for the continued support you have been extending to our Chamber, I truly feel it is the key to our success. I would like to use this Chairman’s letter to relate a great experience I recently had that was afforded to me because of my Chamber membership.
Having met teacher, Eddie Rodrigues (DECA advisor at Stoughton HS), through our PC Card/Golden Directory delivery program, I was invited to be a judge at the DECA State Competition held in Boston on March 9th of this year.
DECA an acronym for 'Distributive Education Clubs of America’, dates back to the days of Harry S. Truman, as a business-orientated competitive marketing program challenging students in their high school years.
DECA’s mission is to enhance the co-curricular education of students with interests in marketing, management and entrepreneurship.
I must say that I was extremely impressed with the many DECA students I had opportunity to meet at this event. There were 1800 students in attendance for this 3-day state competition at The Copley Marriott.
Accompanying me were Bonnie Policow (Chief Imagination Officer of Magical Headdress) and Terry Schneider, our Ex-Director. Bonnie, Terry & Rick Kaplan had volunteered as DECA Judges many times over the past years, both regional and state competitions, and now I know why. These DECA students are smart, confident, organized young adults who are incredibly motivated to succeed. I am sure that I met many of our next business leaders, entrepreneurs, politicians, market trendsetters, business owners, and future CEO’s.
To make it to state competitions, students must first be willing to get into the program and do the work!
Then they are tested at the regional competition (held in Mansfield). Stoughton did well at the regional level, therefore was well represented at ‘states’, with thirty students attending the event.
Terry, Bonnie and I had the pleasure of assisting at Quiz Bowl, a Jeopardy style question and answer session, of which Stoughton’s team [Kayla Floro, Brett Hoffman, Adam Leonard and Brian Kaplan] finished in 4th place out of 29 teams (Rick Kaplan’s son, Brian, was the star of the team). Again I was so impressed with these young adults from all over Massachusetts (I don’t want to tell you what I was into at their age).
By the end of the day (which was very long for the students), Stoughton succeeded by having sixteen students scoring in the top percentile in their event. Stoughton will have seven students going to the International Conference in Salt Lake City this year in May.
This event was such a good time, while being so worthwhile that I am already looking forward to next year, hoping to be asked to return. I have my Chamber involvement and membership to thank because it opened the door for me to be invited and able to participate in such a great program, while meeting so many great people!
~ Chris Petrie
Chairman, Stoughton Chamber of Commerce