Top 5 Takeaways from #DECAPowerTrip 2017

William Huang | Power Trip Power Team

The 2017 Ultimate DECA Power Trip was truly an extraordinary experience!

Here are my top five takeaways from it:

1. because I said I would

because I said I would is a social movement started by Alex Sheen, who served as the opening session keynote speaker at #DECAPowerTrip. Alex’s father, a man of his word, lost his life to cancer, and to remember his legacy Alex began a campaign to show others the important of making and keeping promises. For example, Alex promised he would send anyone in the world 10 promise cards for free if they asked. You can even request your 10 promise cards here!

This promise Alex made soon went viral and overnight he became a social media sensation. To this day, Alex has kept that promise by sending out over 8.42 million promise cards. The salary the Alex collects from all of his public appearances and speaking engagements goes straight to charity. The way he put it was, “Money is an important thing, but it is not everything.”

Alex even walked 240 miles over 10 days, because he made a promise. The way Alex looks at it is, “It doesn’t matter how much you make, the color of your skin, or where you were born, everyone understands a promise.”

You can follow Alex on Instagram @becauseisaidiwould and on Twitter @bcisaidiwould to learn more about his incredible mission.

2. What Colleges Look For

College exhibit booths and learning labs are always a big thing at every DECA conference. Here are a couple things on what admission officers look for in students that I learned at #DECAPowerTrip:

  • They want to see a love of learning.
    • You can show that through grades and recommendation letters.
  • They want to see passion.
    • You can show passion through your essays and college visits.
  • They want to see your impact in your community.
    • You can show this by joining organizations, such as DECA, and doing community service.

3. Leadership

Leadership is a big part of DECA and life. Throughout this conference, I got to meet and learn from many leaders. Here is a quick run through of what I learned:

  • Courage
    • Confidence is the number one thing people look for in leaders.
    • Leaders must always be ready and brave enough to give impromptu speeches.
  • Hospitality
    • As a leader, you will have to greet and entertain a lot of people, so having good hospitality skills will always come in handy.
  • Wisdom
    • Leaders must be smart enough to be able to point their team in the correct direction and make the correct decisions.

The most important thing I learned though, was that all the things I listed above can be trained. You may not have all the qualities of a great leader right now, but nobody is born with all those qualities.

4. Creative Thinking

How do you express your creativity? I’m serious, take some time to answer that question.

Let’s test your creativity by answer these questions:

Example: 3F = 1Y        Answer: 3 Feet = 1 yard

Your turn:

  1. M + M + N.H. + V + C + R.I. = N.E.
  2. 8D – 24H = 1W
  3. 4J + 4Q + 4K = All the F.C.
  4. Y – S – S – A = W
  5. 1 + 6Z = 1M
  6. M + C.H. + P.T. = V.T.

The cool thing about creativity, is that there isn’t one answer to any of these questions. Creativity isn’t always creating something new, it can be tweaking something to make it better. That is why you don’t get an answer key (sorry).

If you can’t figure one of these out, go get a friend and try. Studies show that collaboration increases creativity, which is often why companies create teams to complete a project. Teamwork makes the dream work!

5. Fun

Yes, DECA conferences are a great learning experience, but they are also so much fun! The activities and networking that is available are not only great opportunities, but also so much fun!

One of my favorite activities was in the Twisty Towers learning lab. In Twisty Towers, we had to tie our hands together and try to build the tallest tower from balloons and tape. Also the networking that was available during the DECA After Dark event was awesome. It was so much fun to walk up to complete strangers, and already have something in common with them!

I had a great time at the Ultimate DECA Power Trip this year! If you haven’t gone to one yet, I highly recommend it. Next year’s conference will be in Baltimore, Md. – maybe I will see you there!

This article was written by Power Trip Power Team member, William Huang. You can follow William on Twitter @william_DECA.

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