Naugatuck, Woodland DECA well-represented at state conference

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Students from the DECA chapters at Woodland Regional High School and Naugatuck High School will compete on the national stage in April.

DECA is an organization designed to prepare students for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality and management.

Students from around the state competed at DECA’s State Career Development Conference at the Aqua Turf in Plantsville on March 6.

The competition centers on projects run by students. Students, as a team or individually, can choose from projects in nearly 60 different categories. They then have to present their project along with a paper on it before judges at the competition.

The top three winning projects in each category moved on to compete at the DECA International Career Development Conference April 21 to April 24 in Atlanta, Ga.

Naugatuck’s DECA program had eight projects place in the top three at the state competition.

Naugatuck High students Alyssa Peterson and Bridget Rosikiewicz took first place in the finance operations research category.

Naugatuck students also took home five second places and two third places at the competition.

“Being that this was my first year taking over as DECA adviser, I am extremely pleased with the results,” Naugatuck High marketing teacher and DECA adviser Amy Ferrare said.

Woodland’s DECA chapter is in its fourth year, and the school has competed at the state competition twice.

This year, Woodland students Eliza Smith, Shannon Pruzinsky and Kristen Persico — all founding members of the school’s DECA chapter — took first place in the community service project category with their project “Helping Hands: All Hands On,” a fundraiser for the Moscariello family of Prospect.

Woodland humanities teacher and DECA adviser Christopher Tomlin said this was the team’s first time competing at the state competition.

“Even though the team had no experience going into the competition, they worked extremely hard and dedicated a large amount of time to work on the project,” Tomlin said.

Naugatuck High School

1st Place: Alyssa Peterson, Bridget Rosikiewicz – Finance Operations Research Project

2nd Place: Peter Bigica, Yeshe Rakagme, Numan YIlmaz – Buying and Merchandising Operations Research Project

2nd Place: Alysha Cacace – Financial Literacy Promotion Project

2nd Place: Kathrine Brown – Franchise Business Plan

2nd Place: Stephanie Almeida, Abrianna Hasipi, Francesca Spino – Creative Marketing Project

2nd Place: Brian Goggin, Ben Wierzbicki – Sports & Entertainment Marketing Team Decision Making

3rd Place: Nick Karas, Joe Rafala, Jacob Smith-Community Service Project

3rd Place: Jaimee Trumbley – Entrepreneurship Promotion Plan

Woodland Regional High School

1st Place: Eliza Smith, Shannon Pruzkinsy, Kristen Persico – Community Service Project