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Eight DECA members advance to internationals

Eight members of the Demopolis High School DECA Club will advance to the international competition on April 25-27 at Louisville, Ky.

Those advancing to the internationals were state first-place winners Leanna Parker and Aryn Wilburn in the buying and merchandising team, Colin Russell in marketing management, Morgan Cooper in business services marketing and Andrew Gwin in technical sales; state second-place winners Rebecca England in technical sales and Kate Boland in advertising campaign; and state third-place winner Emily Bedsole in fashion merchandising promotion plan. The top three winners in each category at the state competition advance to the international competition.

At the state competition in Montgomery on Feb. 15-16, junior Colin Russell was named the District IV vice president.

Also, the DHS DECA Club received recognition for the highest level in the state recognition program.

“It was a good time,” said DECA Club sponsor Lucinda Mason. “I was pleased with what we got. There were a couple who I thought might make the cut, but didn’t. There were some who I thought might not, but did.”

The international competition is a bit closer than last year’s internationals at Anaheim, Calif., and the team will have time to see some of the sights while they are there.

“I think the kids are excited about it,” Mason said. “They’re going to get to do some fun things while we are there — not as much as we had entertain us in California! — but there are some things, like the Louisville Slugger museum. Lady Antebellum will be in concert while we are there, so some of them are excited about that.”

Despite the excitement, the purpose of going to Louisville is to compete against other successful DECA Clubs from the 50 states, Canada, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Guam and Germany.

“Our goal is to try to get some of our kids on the stage at international competition,” Mason said. “We had one last year, Colin Russell, and I’d like to see two or three this year, and I think it’s possible. We’ve got some smart kids going, and I’ve already worked with them, to tell them what direction to go in. It’s just a matter of checking with them and making sure they are on track.”

Demopolis has a proud history at the state DECA competitions, as the last time a Demopolis student did not go to internationals was in 1993.