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Raphael Mendiola

Raphael Mendiola

Raphael Mendiola

Clarissa Moreno, Photographer

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Senior Raphael Mendiola was the only North Garland student to advance to the International Career Development Conference (ICDC)  in Atlanta. With it being Mendiola’s first year in Distributive Education Clubs of America (or DECA), Mendiola wishes he would’ve discovered his love for business sooner and not in his last year of high school.

“My passion for business is insane, and that’s what I want to do when I graduate,” said Mendiola.

Depending on what the students choose to pursue in the club, DECA has many opportunities for them to learn different things and areas of business. Mendiola chose entrepreneurship and is learning how to be a good leader. Currently, all GISD high schools have a DECA club with only about five being able to advance.

“It teaches you to do good for your community, as we participate in fundraising for the less fortunate,” Mendiola said. “It’s really up to the person to determine what is learned.”

While DECA competitions are separated on what the students have chosen to do, preparing for the ICDC takes a lot of studying. The courses you take can also have a major impact on the students DECA career as they give you more information and oppourtunities on what you chose.

“I had a series event which consisted of a test then two role plays in which I portrayed a business owner,” Mendiola said.

DECA is a worldwide organization with about 10,000 kids from all over the world that advanced to competition for ICDC. The kids who advance to ICDC are the students who have dominated their district and state competitions. With ICDC being an unforgettable moment for Mendiola, he recalls the great experiences and all the new friends he met in Atlanta.

Mendiola could never forget what they have down for him as he advanced to Atlanta. DECA means more than just competition to Mendiola. To him it’s about helping others, becoming a leader, meeting new friends and the experiences of a lifetime he’s encountered. While Mendiola unfortunately didn’t place at ICDC, that didn’t bring him down. Instead he reflected on the positive side of it.

“As much as I would have wanted to, I didn’t, but that doesn’t mean the world is over,” Mendiola said. “It brings out the emotions and the passion for buisness. A beautiful hidden gem.”

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Clarissa Moreno, Reporter, Photographer

Follow me on Twitter: @claa_rissaaa

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