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Taking the Dare Not to Swear message nationally
BHS trio ready for challenge in Anaheim, Calif.
After narrowly missing a first-place finish in the Washington state DECA public relations campaign contest March 7, Bremerton High School (BHS) sophomores Keely Fein and Haley Lillybridge along with senior Marlena Daugherty have their sights set on success at the DECA national convention in Anaheim, Calif. in April.
“I think we’re going to do great at nationals,” Lillybridge said, adding the trio’s presentation at the state competition only had a few minor flaws.
Daugherty agreed, saying the group knows what it has to clean up to improve upon its performance earlier this month, which all three believed could have been better.
“We know our strengths and we know what areas we need to work on,” Fein chimed in as all three overflowed with exuberance as they spoke about their performance, which promotes the high school’s Dare Not to Swear program.
As part of the contest, each student had to give a prepared speech about a different aspect of the program and other than some slightly rough transitions, all three said their performance at state was the best it had ever been.
“We had given our presentation in front of our classmates and other people, but it didn’t really come together until we did it at state,” Lillybridge said.
In the months leading up to the contest, the trio often spent two hours after school three days a week working on their presentation and individually each student made sacrifices for the good of the entire team.
“DECA came first and there were a lot of times we had to choose DECA over hanging out with friends,” Daugherty said.
For Fein, who played on the BHS girls basketball team, she, too, found time to practice her speech and shared in the effort put forth by her two teammates.
“I would get a lot of looks on the bus when I was practicing it because people thought I was talking to myself, and I’d even practice it in the shower,” Fein said.
With all of the work the trio put in ahead of the state competition, all three admitted they were nervous until their opportunity to take center stage arrived.
“We worked on it all the time and the night before the contest we were up until 2:30 in the morning,” Daugherty said, adding the late night didn’t impact the team’s performance as they placed second out of 68 entries.
Now with the national contest in sight, the trio is working on raising money to take the Dare Not to Swear message nationwide, and to that end the BHS DECA program is distributing donation jars across the area for community members to donate their pocket change.
Donations also can be mailed to BHS DECA, 1500 13th St., Bremerton, WA 98337.
Every penny donated will help the trio make its dreams of success on the national level a reality, as Daugherty said, “We know what we can do, and we can compete against anybody.”