Road trip to International Conference for DECA

Team takes charter bus to Atlanta

Marisa Uddin

Lucas Barr, Staff Reporter

DECA students wrap up their competitions Tuesday at this year’s International Career Development Conference in Atlanta bringing an end to a long weekend that began Friday when the team left Frisco on a chartered bus with other Frisco ISD DECA teams.

“It will be a long competition, it will be exhausting, but I think we have less people than we had last year but we have students that are more prepared,” biology teacher and DECA sponsor Chris Ham said before the team departed Friday. “I feel like they’re going to do better on it so I have more positive feelings we’re going to do well.”

Making the 800 mile journey to Atlanta by bus, Ham and the school’s eight DECA students will leave Georgia Tuesday night and return to Frisco Wednesday.

“I think the bus ride will definitely force us to talk to each other and get to know each other better,” senior Siddhi Patadia said. “There’s eight of us going so I hope that at least a few of us advance to the finals round and maybe place.”

Sophomore Geethika Bonthala qualified for the international competition for the first time and is competing with partner sophomore Kate Liang in Financial Team Decision Making.

“Competing with a partner allows you to collaborate and bounce ideas off each other, and this really in pressure situations such as DECA role plays,” Bonthala said via text message. “It also makes the experience more entertaining as you study and learn together.”

Over 10,000 DECA members made the trek to Atlanta to compete and develop knowledge for careers.

“My favorite thing about competing is being able to connect with others from all over the world with the same interests as me, and the whole process of competing in general as I enjoy the pressure,” Bonthala said. “The business relations and experiences we make at ICDC are irreplaceable, and I hope to keep them with me forever.”

The school’s eight DECA representatives in Atlanta are:

Ria Bajaj (senior),

Shree Balaji (senior)

Geethika Bonthala (sophomore)

Aten Kumar (junior)

Kate Liang (sophomore)

Andy Liu (junior)

Siddhi Patadia (senior)

Sonika Rao (senior)