Six Los Alamos High School Students Qualify For International DECA Competition

LAHS Senior Ella Hailey won first place in the State DECA Competition in the Food Marketing Series category. Photo Courtesy LAPS


Six Los Alamos High School students have qualified to participate in the International DECA competition.  Logan Black, Cassidy Jimenez, Joshua Moulton, Ella Hailey, Alexander Usov, and Nicholas Usov will compete in the International DECA Testing Event in April at the International Career Development Conference. All six of these students ranked in the top three scores in their category in the New Mexico State DECA Competition.

Ella Hailey won first place in the State in the Food Marketing Series category. Alexander Usov won first place in the State Team event, Buying and Merchandising, and Nicholas Usov won first place in State Team event, Buying and Merchandising, and special recognition for an exceptional score on the written test. Cassidy Jimenez placed third in the State for Restaurant and Food Service Management; Joshua Moulton placed third in the State for Entrepreneurship. Logan Black won second place in the State for Sports and Entertainment Marketing. 

Thirty-nine Los Alamos High School DECA students participated in a written test competition at the District One level, where students from 15 high schools competed for a chance to test at the State level. Testing categories included marketing, entrepreneurship, business management, hospitality and tourism, and finance.  Thirty-one of the LAHS students advanced to the New Mexico State DECA Competition, where they participated in an additional written test and a “role play” situation, with students from 24 high schools.  Fourteen LAHS students qualified as New Mexico State Finalists.  These students then participated in an additional “role play”.  The top three finalists in each category qualify to compete at the international level.

“I am very proud of our DECA students,” said LAHS DECA Advisor, Dr. Sharon Hurley. “We started preparing for the competitions last fall.  The students have worked diligently, under the challenging circumstances of remote instruction. They persevered and represented our school and our community very well.  

“I am inspired by their dedication and accomplishments,” Hurley added. “I am very grateful to LAHS Administrators and Los Alamos Public Schools District Office for their support of the DECA program.”

The competition is part of the 2021 International Career Development Conference hosted by the DECA organization.  The (virtual) conference will bring twenty thousand high school students, advisors, DECA alumni, and business people together to discuss preparing for college and careers in business.  DECA is an international organization dedicated to providing opportunities for students to participate in leadership training and career pathways conferences in the fields of marketing, finance, business management and hospitality and tourism. 

Additionally, DECA provides students with experience in interviewing and networking with other students from around the globe who have similar career interests, and offers merit-based scholarships for participating students.