It’s About the Journey, Not the Destination
As I packed up my wardrobe and added the finishing touches to my presentation, I thought about what my first ICDC experience would be like. I imagined a situation similar to SCDC, where a couple thousand kids would be crammed into some hotel to compete and then explore the city afterwards. If nothing else, at least it was in Orlando, Fla., and I would be missing a lot of school.
Almost immediately after arriving to this conference, however, I realized the true extent of the opportunity that was at my fingertips. I had never had so much fun in my life. I fell in love with the pressure of the competition, the thrill of Universal Studios, the fresh air at Cocoa Beach, and the bonding not only with the 15 kids from my chapter, but with members from all around the globe. It was an absolute blast and I was immediately ready to next year’s ICDC.
The following year, I was as pumped as ever to go to Salt Lake City, Utah. Now serving as Indiana DECA State President, I felt it was necessary to prove this was a titled I had earned. So working in overdrive, my partner and I were able to bring home the first place trophy in the Stock Market Game – an achievement I knew it would not soon forget.
It wasn’t until this year, however, that I truly realized how much DECA can change someone’s life. After the most stressful week of my life, filled with caucusing and giving speech upon speech, I was able to fulfill a dream I had set years ago – being elected to the office of Central Region Vice President. I know had the chance serve as an ambassador to this incredible organization, and I realized that this was the real achievement I would never forget.
The story of my evolvement within DECA and transition from one year to the next is not atypical. Anyone who puts in the effort and dedication, and takes the necessary initiative, can walk away with the same results. I feel as though I am still just beginning my journey with DECA. Have you started yours? Don’t waste anytime. Make It Count now and start achieving your own DECA dreams.
Follow Connor on Twitter @ConnorDECA.