NAMPA — Alyssa McGill stands nervously in front of two judges with her poster board and notecards. She pitches a 15-minute retirement plan targeted towards recent college graduates.
“I want to tell you the easiest way to save while having a budget,” said the Lewiston High senior.
On Friday, Alyssa competed in the Career Development Conference hosted by DECA, an organization that prepares high school students in a variety of career areas, including marketing, management, merchandising and entrepreneurship.
Alyssa competed in the “professional selling and consulting events” category. Her goal was to convince the judges she had the best retirement plan.
“I think I did alright,” Alyssa said. “I was so nervous, but I felt great at the end.”
Nearly 550 students from across Idaho including, Boise, Coeur d’Alene, Post Falls and Twin Falls competed Friday at the Nampa Civic Center.
Students compete on teams or individually and in categories such as marketing, finance, business management, administration, hospitality and tourism.
The top three in each category qualify to compete at the International DECA Conference in Atlanta in April, which includes 14,000 high school students from 11 different countries.
“We are empowering them for life,” said Shauna Williams the DECA state advisor. “These students are innovators and creators.”
Idaho DECA partners with nearly 25 businesses, including Albertsons, AT&T, Ennis Fine Furniture, Hewlett-Packard and The Grove Hotel. The 47 judges were mostly business and marketing professionals.
For more information about DECA, click here.