BENNINGTON — A group of students from the Southwest Vermont Career Development Center took home several prizes from a state competition in Burlington earlier this month, and are looking forward to competing on the national level.

DECA, which was formerly known as the Distributive Education Clubs of America, each year offers statewide and national competitions in which technical students can perform their arts in front of judges. The Vermont competition this year took place in Burlington on Feb. 8 and 9, and several CDC students received awards. Kylee Lockwood-Bubier came in second place in the Food Marketing Series event, which earned her a $1,500 scholarship to Johnson and Wales University. Also placing in that event was Mirah Sauer-Yerke, who came in third. Robert Dross placed second overall in Human Resource Management, after being graded as having the best essay. Kathryn Frasier excelled in Sports and Entertainment Marketing, earning not just first place overall and a $2,500 scholarship to Southern New Hampshire University, but also being recognized for having the best essay, the best roleplay, and the best second roleplay.

The National competition will take place in April in Nashville, Tenn. Many of the students who competed in the state competition will be attending, but DECA advisor Lauri Wright has said that every year some are unable to make it due to conflicts with spring sports.

The CDC students will also be recognized in Nashville for achieving Gold Level Re-Certification for their school-based enterprise, the CDC's campus store. According to DECA, "A school-based enterprise is an entrepreneurial operation in a school setting that provides goods and services to meet the needs of the market. SBEs are managed and operated by students as hands-on learning laboratories that integrate National Curriculum Standards in Marketing, Finance, Hospitality and Management. Marketing educators and DECA advisors have utilized this effective educational tool for over four decades to provide their students with realistic and practical learning experiences that reinforce classroom instruction, enhance 21st century skill development, and prepare students for college and careers."


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CDC students Emily Bly, Robert Dross, Dylan Fletcher, Preston Leake, Zachary Rogers, Sauer-Yerke, Cole Marcoux, and Ty Galie worked on getting the certification, with the help of Wright and their teachers, Barbara Gorbaty and Neal Hogan. According to DECA, SBEs that want to be considered for certification must, "submit extensivedocumentation that demonstrates their adherence to various marketing and retail standards."

"The students I have in DECA are some of the nicest kids in the school," said Wright in a previous interview with the Banner, "I feel very fortunate to be their advisor and to work alongside them. Teamwork is what we stress at CDC and these wonderful students make it very easy. The CDC is an excellent opportunity for the youth here in Bennington and in the surrounding area."

Derek Carson can be reached for comment at 802-447-7567, ext. 122.