On Jan. 11, 2018, Cranford High School sent 94 students to the NJ DECA Regional Conference at Kean University to compete against students from dozens of schools across Central New Jersey including Jackson Memorial, West Essex, Highland Park, and Monroe High Schools.

DECA prepares emerging leaders and entrepreneurs for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality and management in high schools and colleges around the globe. DECA is a program for business-minded students looking to find real world applications for what they learn in their business classes. At the conference, students are presented with business scenarios, given 10 minutes to creatively solve the problem, and another ten minutes to role play the solution before a judge. In addition to the role play, all DECA members are required to take a written test in their chosen business area.

Thirty six CHS students earned top scores in their respective events at the regional competition, qualifying them to attend the NJ DECA State Career Development Conference in Atlantic City on February 27-March 1, 2018. 

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"Year after year our students demonstrate depth of subject knowledge, problem solving skills, and maturity while appearing before the judges, and this year was no different," Donna Cathcart, one of the club's advisors, commented in regard to her students. "We are so proud of how our students represented themselves, their families, the community and Cranford High School.”

Cindy Keyasko, also an advisor, adds, "Our members take preparation very seriously and have already begun preparing for States.  They are mature, responsible, and confident!"

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Below is a list of the students who qualified for and will be attending the NJ State Conference in February:

Students Who Placed Top 3 in Their Event:

Emma Lore – 1st place, Apparel & Accessories Marketing
Kathryn Pringle- 1st place, Hotel & Lodging Management
Kevin Schwartz- 1st place, Sports & Entertainment Marketing

Madeleine, Larrabee, 1stplace, Principles of Hospitality & Tourism

Deirdre Tighe, 2nd place, Principles of Hospitality & Tourism

Matthew Doran, 2nd place, Restaurant & Food Service Marketing

Jayna Mallon, 3rd Place, Automotive Services Marketing

Rachel Durant, 3rd Place, Principles of Hospitality & Tourism

Kerry Pollock, 3rd Place, Business Services Marketing

Samantha Berry & Claire Readie, 3rd Place, Marketing Management Team Decision-Making Event

Christopher Guiditta & Hannah McCarthy, Sports & Entertainment Marketing Team Decision-Making Event

 Also qualifiying in their event and attending the NJ State DECA Leadership Conference are:

Lee Rosenthal – Entrepreneurship Series

Steven Shore, Joseph Casazza, and Veronica Niemiec for Food Services Marketing; Benjamin Quinutolo, Sara Iredell and Noah Kopla in Principles of Marketing; Ian Sullivan, Erin Infante, Michael Callahan and Chloe Levy in Sports and Entertainment Marketing; Joseph Carrea and Sarah Martin in Principles of Hospitality and Tourism; Kaitlyn Herreid in Retail Merchandising; Madison Howells in Restaurant & Food Service Marketing.  In team events, student qualifiers are:  the team of Zachary Blevins and Gavin Kellett, and the team of Michael Carracino and Brian Nigro for Entrepreneurship Team Decision-Making Event.  In Sports & Entertainment Marketing Team Decision-Making were Matthew Fonseca and Jeremy Hunt, and in the category of Travel & Tourism Team Decision-Making Event is Daniel Gomez and Christian Malamug.

Students who excel at the NJ State DECA Leadership Conference will then continue to compete at the DECA National Conference which will be held in April in Atlanta, Georgia.