RIDC presents a $1,000 check to RHS DECA Club

Photo by Brian Stockman: The Ridgway Industrial Development Corporation recently donated $1,000 to RHS DECA Club for their trip to Orlando Florida to participate in the International Career Development Conference. Pictured are RIDC Representatives Ben Brazinski, Steve Cleveland, Jane Hasselman Bryndel, Tom Buck, Michael Depanfilis, and Beth Shuttleworth. Also pictured are RHS DECA members; Kyle Gordon, advisor; and Thomas Podpora, principal.
Brian Stockman
Staff Writer

In late February, nine Ridgway DECA members traveled to Hershey to compete at the 68th Annual Pennsylvania DECA Career Development Conference.
DECA is a business and entrepreneurial club for high school students who compete in various categories based on their career and professional interests. The competition includes a 100-question written exam, along with professional roleplay scenarios that students must navigate and execute in front of corporate judges. Judges for the state conference included major executives from companies such as Macy's, AT&T, Department of Education, Ohio State University, Drexel University, Merrill Lynch, Walgreen's, United Airlines, Walmart, and Yellowstone National Park to name a few.
Over the last three years since the Ridgway DECA has been established, Ridgway has qualified 27 of their 33 members to compete at the state level. Representing Ridgway DECA for the 2018-2019 state competition were: Anna Cristini, Human Resources Management; Samantha Anderson, Integrated Marketing Campaign; Madison Shilk and Cole Salberg, Entrepreneurship Team Decision Making; Gabriella Rohr and Chloe Horning, Travel and Tourism Team Decision Making; Collyn Shuttleworth, Automotive Services Marketing; Josephine Bevacqua, Principles of Business Administration and Management; and Kira Eckert, Quick Service Restaurant Marketing.
Ridgway students, who represented only 0.4 percent of the over 2,500 state competitors, proved not to be disadvantaged by their small numbers.
Madison Shilk and Cole Salberg received special recognition for their top role — play performance in the category of Entrepreneurship Team Decision Making.
Anna Cristini, Ridgway DECA’s president, achieved the highest written exam score and the highest role play to score in Human Resources Management. Cristini went on to take second place overall in the state for the category of Human Resources Management. Not only did she qualify to compete at DECA’s International Career Development Conference in Orlando, Florida; but she was also offered a $60,000 scholarship to attend Jefferson University.
Along with Cristini, the entire Ridgway DECA chapter is also invited to attend DECA’s International Career Development Conference in Orlando, which hosts some of the best young entrepreneurs and future business leaders from all over the world. The conference includes workshops and seminars presented by major companies from all over the country, as well as the highest level of competition for the DECA program. Students who compete at the state level have less than a 10 percent chance to advance to this level.

For more on this story, see today's publication of the Ridgway Record (Friday, March 15, 2019.)