Collegiate_DECA_Fall_Conference-web.jpgMSU Collegiate DECA has kicked off the 2015-2016 year with a bang. A number of new members have joined the chapter this fall, and they look forward to competing this year in state and national contests, in addition to helping out in the community.

The new officer team this fall includes president, Christopher Snook; vice president, Remington Werner; secretary/treasurer, Brock Sherva; and public relations officer, Leighanna Helgoe.

The group participated in the annual Collegiate DECA Fall Leadership in Fargo on Oct. 20 and 21. Twenty-nine Mayville State chapter members attended. They had the opportunity to meet with members of other chapters from across the state, as well as with business professionals from the local area.

The keynote presentation, “Never Give Up - The Survivor Way,” featured Holly Hoffman, a participant on the reality television show “Survivor” in season 21. She told the audience that being on a reality show not only made her completely step out of her comfort zone, it made her realize the importance of six words: faith, attitude, confidence, determination, desire, and perseverance. She used her experiences from the show to explain the power that lies within a person’s interpretation of the situation and his or her ability to turn adversity into strength.

MSU chapter president, Chris Snook, presented in one of two breakout sessions held following the keynote presentation. Snook shared information on Mayville State’s highly successful DECA passport program. He encouraged other chapters and individual members to plan activities and participate in events that enhance the experiences of members. The leadership passport rewards action taken by members and chapters that build personal and professional skill sets focused around the organization’s four attributes and values: competence, innovation, integrity, and teamwork. Passport program participants are recognized at the International Career Development Conference in Washington, D.C.

Ann Pollert, technician and career developer from General Equipment and Supplies, Inc., talked to the students about what they can do to better themselves when interviewing. Ann travels to various schools around North Dakota talking to students about careers and college, and is always encouraging students to make sure they go into a career that they have the skill set for and to choose something they enjoy. According to Ann she has the best job in the world. She was very enthusiastic and excited to talk to the students about her work and why it’s important to really love what you are doing.

In the spring, MSU Collegiate DECA members will participate in state competitions, where students strive for top honors in one of 24 different competitive events. Competition areas include accounting, finance, marketing, hospitality, and management. The goal is to qualify for the national conference which will be held in Washington, D.C. next spring. Students can participate in group and/or individual events in the various categories.

“The Collegiate DECA Mayville Chapter is a great opportunity to build a resume, increase professionalism, and help ease the transformation from the classroom to the workforce,” said public relations officer, Leighanna Helgoe. “If you want to keep up with MSU Collegiate DECA, please follow our Facebook page at Our national DECA theme this year is ‘Be epic.’ We’d love to have you join us and find out more!”

Photo caption: Pictured in the back (l to r) are: Rob Johnston, Logan Staigle, Jordan Midgarden, David Dukart, Kade Pengilly, Jacob Pladson, Logan Vettleson, Leigh Dean, Daniel Lindgren, Jace Pederson, Donte Stevens, Chris Snook, Leighanna Helgoe, Dustin Olson. Middle Row: Erica Mellick, Kayla Bohn, Brenna Swanson, Nicole Meyer, Laura Ewert, Orson Gallardo, Anthony Stockfish, Ben Myszkowski. Front Row: Remington Werner, Gretchen Freed, Rhonda Nelson, Sara Larson, Jordan Johnson, Heather Nygaard, and Madeleyne Gallardo.