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Butler Students Place in Top 10 at International Conference

DECA 2016
Published: Friday, May 27th, 2016

Several Butler Community College students recently competed at the Collegiate DECA International Career Development Conference, with two team members scoring in the Top 10 in the nation.

Butler Community College students Zachary Thornburg of Potwin and David Dellinger of Whitewater finished in the Top 10 in their events at the Collegiate DECA International Career Development Conference held in April in Washington D.C. Thornburg competed in Restaurant and Food Marketing and Dellinger in Emerging Technologies Marketing.

Collegiate DECA is the largest student organization in the U.S. for students majoring in marketing or management. Over one thousand members competed at the conference, from two-year colleges like Butler as well as four-year institutions such as Texas Tech University. International students from around the world, as far away as China, also joined the U.S. students.

Butler students competed in events from various areas of marketing and management, such as retail, restaurant and fashion marketing. Some contestants competed in a simulated marketing situation, having to prepare a solution on the spot and present it to a team of judges. Others prepared their submission ahead of time for events such as business plan competitions. Events are judged by business professionals active in a related occupational field.

Special guest speakers, seminars and entertainment were featured at the conference. Students enjoyed camaraderie by meeting new people from other schools across the nation.

In addition to competition, the members also enjoyed touring the many sights and activities that Washington D.C. had to offer, including spending time with other Kansas DECA students to further the organization in the state.

According to Jared McGinley, professor of Marketing& Management as well as adviser to the group, “The students had a great year, preparing, fundraising, practicing for competitive events, traveling to and competing at Hays, Kansas and of course in Washington D.C. I am very happy to see their hard work pay off in terms of national recognition and a great experience at the International Conference. They represented Butler very well at the national level. I am very proud of their efforts.”

Students competing or placing at the International Conference are listed below by hometown:


Zachary Thornburg, placed Top 10 in Nation, Restaurant and Food Marketing

Valley Center:

Christy Collins, competed in Restaurant and Food Marketing

Kaden Miller, competed in Entrepreneurship

Molly Taylor, competed in Restaurant and Food Marketing


David Dellinger, placed Top 10 in Nation, Emerging Technologies Marketing,


AJ Edwards, competed in Sales Management