Talent in the #DECAATTProject Pipeline

Throughout DECA’s five-year collaboration with AT&T, thousands of students across the country have been mentored by AT&T’s service-focused volunteers. Following a successful year in which AT&T volunteers mentored DECA students, a graduate of Streamwood High School in Illinois was the first from #DECAATTProject to become an AT&T employee.

Yessica Leon knew she was interested in business and was encouraged by a friend to join DECA. She recalls, “At first, I didn’t know what it was or anything about it, but I decided to step out of my comfort zone and started going to their weekly chapter meetings. Being a part of DECA not only allowed me to experience the joys of competition, like when I qualified for state competition at the Illinois Career Development Conference (CDC).” With the support of AT&T, attending CDC became a reality rather than a dream. Yessica said, “I was able to see myself achieve something I otherwise never thought possible.”

As a part of #DECAATTProject, Yessica and her classmates received mentoring from AT&T professionals throughout the year.  She said, “I was able to visit an AT&T store and use the networking skills learned in an earlier mentoring session. While at the store and during lunch afterward, I made a connection with an AT&T store manager. We were discussing my future goals, and where I saw myself in five years. He asked me to send him my resume; I didn’t really think much of it, I just thought he wanted to review and provide feedback for my future. I was completely unaware that it would turn into an interview, which resulted in a job with AT&T at one of their stores!”

Yessica added, “I can honestly say that because of my gamble to step out and join DECA, and the support from AT&T are the reasons I am where I am today.  I have a job at an AT&T store; while I don’t know where that will take me, I know it will help build and start my career. It will give me the ability to gain skills for my future. I’m extremely grateful to DECA and AT&T, because without them I wouldn’t be where I am today. As I take on new adventures after high school, I hope DECA and AT&T continue helping students like me for years to come and are able to give future students the same opportunities they gave me.”

Yessica is currently working at an AT&T retail store in Illinois while continuing her education as a freshman at Robert Morris University.

DECA members have access to engagement opportunities with all National Advisory Board partners. If you are interested in working with our national partners, please view the list here. Please reach out to development@deca.org for questions.

Categories: Members, Members – Students, Profiles

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