The Smoke Signal, MSJ's Official Newspaper




By: Staff Writer Santhosh Paramasivan


MSJ DECA attended the Leadership and Competitive Excellence (LACE) conference from November 14 to 16 at the San Jose Double Tree Hilton. The conference was organized by Silicon Valley DECA for DECA chapters in the Silicon Valley region. Seniors Samir Panjwani and Kush Patel , and Juniors Shivam Patel and Jacinta Chang are the four officers from MSJ who ran the conference. Numerous other schools such as Monta Vista, Lynbrook, Carlmont, Harker, and Gunn also attended the conference.


The LACE conference was organized to give attendees training for competitive events they are interested in.  The top eight international and state conference winners taught about their respective events at workshops. Several DECA alumni shared their secrets, tips, and tricks with the attendees in order to best develop their skills for this year’s competitive conferences. In addition to successful DECA alumni, there were multiple guest speakers. Keynote speaker Scott Greenberg kicked off the conference on Friday, November 14. On Saturday, Jennifer Aaker, Ro Khanna, and many industry speakers from different companies made appearances, speeches and even conducted workshops to better prepare the students for different events. At night, Chang, SVDECA VP of Fashion, hosted a a fashion show sponsored by David’s Bridal and Men’s Warehouse. The creator of the popular video game Guitar Hero spoke to the attendees on Sunday.


DECA has been largely popular at MSJ in recent years, and this year MSJ DECA surpassed Monta Vista DECA as the largest DECA chapter in the state of California. Panjwani, SVDECA VP of Chapter Development, said “I loved seeing MSJ students participating and getting engaged at the conference. It was amazing seeing them network with other schools and meeting new people!”


The next conference MSJ DECA will be attending is the Silicon Valley Regional conference in early January. With the record chapter turnout this year, MSJ DECA is on track for a successful competitive year.


Photo Courtesy of Silicon Valley DECA

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