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Are YOU Ready for ICDC?

The International Career Development Conference (ICDC) in Salt Lake City is only a couple weeks away now. Are you ready for your event?

Imagine it: having your name called in front of over 15,000 people, standing on stage while the crowd chants your name, and holding a well-earned trophy within your hands. Becoming a national DECA champion is definitely exciting; however, you can’t become a champion overnight! Whether you’ve been studying for the past two months or you plan on cramming the day of, here’s some competition prep to help you get on track to winning that trophy!

I met with former ICDC competitor and Top 10 winner in Principles of Finance, Stephan Kim, to discuss what he did to study for ICDC.

Q: What kind of material did you study in order to prepare?

A: I mainly studied performance indicators. I had a sort of DECA bible that had

all the answers to my performance indicators. It was really long, but it was definitely helpful, especially for some quick studying before competition. But don’t forget that the test is just as important than your roleplay! So get exposed to as many practice tests as you can!

Q: How often did you study?

A: I tried to fit in studying during my school week; usually two times a week. Good thing I was injured at the time and had more time at home instead of playing soccer!  A little at a time eases the burden. It was often enough that I got used to my competitive event and I wasn’t as nervous during ICDC. I also utilized the time  I was on the airplane.

Q: How did you feel going into to your exam/ roleplay?

A: I definitely felt nervous, but since I studied over a period of time, I was more confident because I had prepared. However, if you’re not nervous for a big event then you haven’t prepared correctly. I tried to keep myself as composed as possible and tried to smile a lot, even if I was shaking inside. Smiling can make all the difference.

Q: Was studying worth it?

A: For sure! I don’t know how I would have done it without studying!

Q: How did it feel standing on stage?

A: Awesome! There were so many people in the audience, and just hearing my name being called for Top Ten was probably more nerve-racking than the competition itself!

Q: What else do you recommend for other competitors?

A: It depends on how bad you want it. Obviously I wanted it pretty bad. So my advice to you is to want it. You have to want to win it. From there, I know you’ll get the motivation to study tests, performance indicators, and practice role plays. Remember: Practice makes perfect.

Performance indicators, sample events, sample tests, and more can be found at:

http://www.deca.org/competitions/2.

The best way to practice for your test is to get used to marketing vocabulary:

http://www.marketingpower.com/_layouts/Dictionary.aspx

Learning about current trends in your industry can make you sound more informed and help you get used to business jargon:

http://online.wsj.com/home-page

http://www.ifre.com/

http://www.businessweek.com/

http://www.forbes.com/