Josiah Dueck had been preparing for years for the moment his name was announced as a first place winner at DECA’s International Career Development Conference in Washington, D.C.
The fourth-year Goodman School of Business student from Fonthill won first place for his business case analysis and presentation.
DECA is an international organization that prepares students at both the high school and university levels for leadership through competitive events and professional development activities.
After competing at DECA’s provincial competition in January along with 55 of his colleagues, he was chosen to represent the Goodman School internationally, an opportunity reserved for a select number of Goodman students each year.
The international competition sees approximately 1,000 business students from all over the U.S. and Canada competing in several academic areas including business management and administration, entrepreneurship, finance and accounting, hospitality and tourism and marketing and communications.
The competition tests students’ business acumen by requiring them to read and analyze a short case or business problem and come up with a recommendation and implementation plan, all within 30 minutes. Students assume the role of a manager or company executive and present to a judge for 15 minutes and write an exam that tests their academic knowledge of their chosen category.
Although Dueck had competed in other case competitions, this was his first time competing on an international stage.
“This year I really wanted to get as much out of my educational year as I could and DECA was a big part of that,” he said. “It was an amazing experience and I’m really happy I chose to do DECA and experience what it was like to put Goodman’s skills to the test on an international stage.”
Dueck said he owes his DECA success to his business courses, the intensive training sessions he participated in throughout the year and his experience in the hospitality industry. Dueck worked for four years as a manager at his parents’ restaurant, Conversations Café in Beamsville.
He said the competition experience help develop important skills.
“Competitions take classroom learning to another level and develops relevant, transferable skills we will need in the workplace,” he said.
Together, Goodman students won a total of 32 medals and one plaque, which is a record number of awards for the Goodman student association.
“The time pressure and highly competitive nature of DECA ICDC means it is necessary for students to think on their feet to make sound business decisions and deliver a polished, engaging presentation,” said Goodman School of Business Dean Andrew Gaudes.
“Their success and awards demonstrate that they are very prepared to compete with their peers on an international level and we are proud of their accomplishments.”
The following students were finalists in the preliminary round:
- Riya Barot and Vishrut Shah: Business Ethics (top presentation)
- Simran Arora and Ishan Patel: Business to Business Marketing (top presentation)
- Kido Okeleke and Mile Peles: Sports and Entertainment Marketing (top presentation)
- Eric Shelton: Banking and Financial Services (top presentation)
- Smiley Bhayee: Fashion and Merchandising Marketing
- Majid El-Assi: Fashion and Merchandising Marketing (top written exam)
- Charnjot Brar: Human Resources Management (top written exam)
- Brennan Froud: Marketing Management (top written exam, top presentation)
- Josiah Dueck: Restaurant and Food Management (top written exam, top presentation)
- Jayna Sutaria: Travel and Tourism Marketing Management (top written exam, top presentation)
The following students were top overall finalists in the final round:
- Vishrut Shah and Riya Barot: Business Ethics
- Ishan Patel and Simran Arora: Business to Business Marketing
- Mile Peles and Kido Okeleke: Sports and Entertainment Marketing
- Eric Shelton: Banking and Financial services
- Smiley Bhayee: Fashion and Merchandising marketing
- Charnjot Brar: Human Resources management
- Josiah Dueck: Restaurant and Food Management (first place overall)
- Jayna Sutaria: Travel and Tourism Marketing Management