RTCC Students Take First In Statewide Business Competition

Front Page / Mar. 16, 2017 9:01am EDT

Business management students at Randolph Technical Career Center (RTCC) dominated statewide competitions held last month in Burlington, the RTCC board was told recently by Director Jason Gingold.

The competition was the annual Vermont Career Development Conference held at the Davis Center at VTC.

Two RTCC students won first place in their academic category. By winning their category, Gingold explained, the two students earned the right to represent Vermont at DECA’s International Career Development Conference in California later in the year.

Haleigh Molinario of Williams­town, he said, totally dominated the “Personal Financial Literacy” category by placing first in each of the four individual events, earning a $2,000 scholarship to Vermont Technical College.

Tapanga Murray of Randolph finished first in the category of “Business Management and Administration” and also won a $2,000 VTC scholarship.

In all, five RTCC students earned recognition and won scholarships totaling $6,500.

RTCC swept the top three places in the Business Management and Administration category. Following Murray by placing second and third were Sheyenne Miller of Randolph, earning a $1,500 scholarship, and Mikaya Potvin of Williamstown, with a $1,000 scholarship.

Mariah Vilbrin of Northfield took third place in the role play competition, and in the Public Speaking category, Mikaya Potvin finished third overall.


RTCC’s business management teacher, Wayne Goulet, said he had been confident his team would do well during the competition.

“Since the beginning of the school year, I have been amazed at how quickly they have understood business fundamentals and personal finance,” he said. “Their incredible performance at the conference reflects their hard work and dedication.”

Goulet was also quick to thank Jan Stratton, RTCC’s previous business management teacher, for her assistance in preparing the students for the conference.

“Most of the students’ success belongs to Jan,” he said. “As a veteran of multiple DECA conferences, Jan provided coaching to alleviate student anxiety.

“As a result, the students approached the conference with more confidence and the results speak for themselves.”

This year’s DECA conference was the second for Haleigh Molinario.

“As a result of participating in last year’s conference, I was better prepared for the role-play scenarios,” she said. “When I finished each scenario, I was extremely confident I did well.”

For Murray, the conference was an eye-opening experience.

“I didn’t know what to expect, especially during the role-play competition,” she said. “However, once I was presented with the scenario and started speaking, my confidence greatly increased.”

More than 100 Vermont students from high schools throughout the state attended the conference. DECA is an international organization with 219,000 student members from 3,500 high schools around the world. It sees its mission as preparing emerging leaders and entrepreneurs in marketing, finance, hospitality, and management.

Also at RTCC

At the board meeting, Gingold also described the participatory activities that RTCC students are taking advantage of.

Some 134 students are participating in job shadows, work-based learning, career fairs, and clinical experiences, he said. These range from experiences in pre-schools, clinical visits to Gifford Medical Center, working with cows at a dairy farm, learning at the Vt. Department of Taxes, and with construction firms, he said.

“Employers stress [that] our students demonstrate important 21st century job skills,” he said.

“We thank our 54 community and business partners for their support.”

Upcoming events at the Career Center include a Future Farmers of America conference at the school, and a Summer Fest in April to talk about summer employment.

On May 23, four technical centers will take the “MRE Challenge,” competing to see who can make the best “meals ready to eat” for the National Guard.

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