Missing Prom for DECA?


This Friday, April 28th, Mariemont’s hottest and most popular dance will be taking place. But it will be missing a few key dancers. Starting Wednesday, April 26th through April 29th, DECA’s International Career Development Conference is taking place. Several talented DECA members at Mariemont High School have earned a spot at the conference in Anaheim… at the expense of missing prom.

For Juniors Alex Wilson, Cameron Stephens, and Matthew McGrory, the decision between Prom and DECA was quite difficult.

“I was really torn up about the decision for a while, because it was a pretty tough one to make, and we only had a few days to think about it. But in the end, I ended up just going with my gut and deciding to go to Anaheim,” says Alex Wilson.

This will be Wilson’s second year competing at the international level.

After making the tough decision to head to Anaheim, Wilson looks forward to what is ahead. “I was kinda sad that I have to miss prom for it, but last year DECA International was a lot of fun, and this year it is in California and we are going to Disneyland and the beach,  so I’m kinda fine with missing prom now,” says Wilson. Wilson later adds that, “It’s kinda funny hearing about all the prom-related drama, and it is nice not having to worry about it.”

For Stephens, choosing DECA over prom was a must this year. “There is no guarantee that you qualify again next year–so I viewed this as a one-time opportunity for me. I have prom next year, so I am pretty happy with my choice,” says Stephens. “Prom sounds like so much fun and part of me is sad, but I’ll be in California doing what I love and competing with the best.”

Both Stephens (left) and McGrory (right) have been in DECA for three years, making it to the international stage for the first time this year. (PHOTO BY STEPHENS)

Although Matthew McGrory is looking forward to the conference, he is “Obviously bummed about having to miss a chance to show off my lack of knowledge of pop music and wear square toe’d dress shoes.”

McGrory knew that ICDC was for him freshmen year, when he heard stories from Mrs. Baas of students deciding not to go to the international competition because of prom. “I always thought that these kids were making a terrible decision, and if I were ever put in that situation, I would go no matter what.”

As Matthew looks back on his freshmen year, he realizes how funny that thought was. “It’s funny to see how much has changed in only three years. Although I pretty much knew that I’d choose DECA over prom going into state competition this year, it took me a lot longer to come to that decision than my freshman self would have imagined,” says McGrory.

Unfortunately, for some of the juniors headed to the competition, they had to scrap plans to ask a special someone to the big dance.

“I had big plans to ask a girl I really wanted to go with, but she gets my decision,” says Stephens.

“I was thinking of asking one of my senior friends, and I was probably going to ask with something inspired by The Office, so I’m kinda sad that I couldn’t do that, but regardless, DECA will be a ton of fun,” says Wilson.

When asked about his plans, Matthew McGrory refused to comment.


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