Spotlight on Unique ICDC Projects

There are so many events happening at the DECA International Career Development Conference, sometimes it’s hard to take them all in. If you’re able to stop and take a minute, it is amazing to witness the myriad of topics and discover the inspiration or stories behind them.

I was fortunate to find two very unique and interesting written event projects at the 2013 ICDC that show strong creativity and potential.

Lauren Mason and Kylie Smith of Robinson Secondary DECA in Fairfax, Va., participated in the Public Relations Project, and their project, "Robinson Stands Up To Cancer," raised money and strengthened awareness for their cause.

Their inspiration for the project came from a very personal experience with cancer.

“Last May, the school’s softball coach, Berry Grodnick, died after a two year battle with lymphoma,” Smith explained.

Going beyond the cause of just one man or just one type of cancer, the girls started ‘Robinson Stand Up to Cancer’ to help all those affected.

“[We wanted to help] not only him but everyone in the community,” Smith added. “If you haven’t personally been affected by cancer, you know somebody who has.”

This passion to help those affected by cancer has led the girls to create school wide awareness days. The girls raise money by charging people who want to wear hats in school that day, which was able to fund a memorial garden at their school in the shape of a lavender ribbon, the symbol representing support for all types of cancer. Together, the two girls, along with their school and DECA chapter, have helped to raise over $3,000 for the charity organization, Cancer Schmancer.

Some DECA projects are inspired by unique travels, which was the case for Sarah Walters, Rachel Kim and Sam An, also from Robinson Secondary DECA. This team created an unique and original business, The Ruff Life Café. As described by Walters and An, it is “a dog friendly café that provides products and services for both dogs and dog owners.”

“The original inspiration was the Korean dog play area which offered treats for the dogs. We wanted to offer treats for humans as well to strengthen the target market,” said Kim, who has visited Korea and these dog playing areas, modeled after cafes.

Both of these ICDC projects are innovative and promising, and serve as wonderful of examples of what DECA members are capable of creating.

Follow Cole on Twitter @coole_r

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