diego juarez

A senior at Tecumseh High School has recently made waves in the world of entrepreneurship and business education with his remarkable achievements at the DECA International Career Development Conference (ICDC) held in Anaheim, California. Diego Juarez’s journey to success began with his pivotal role in managing “the spOt,” a school store and learning lab at the Lenawee Intermediate School District TECH Center, which earned gold-level certification for the 2023-2024 school year.

DECA, which stands for Distributive Education Clubs of America, is a prominent career and technical student organization aiming to groom future leaders and entrepreneurs interested in marketing, finance, hospitality, and management.

the spot
“the spOt” serves as more than just a store; it’s a hands-on learning platform where students hone their marketing, finance, and management skills. This initiative, known as a school-based enterprise (SBE), provides practical experience running a business in an educational setting.

Leading the way for this school year, Diego holds the top job for “the spOt” as he’s the marketing manager.

“I oversee all of the marketing promotion. We have social media that we do. We do flyers as well as menu design. So, I kind of oversee that and check all of that off,” said Diego. Additionally, Diego plays a crucial role in assigning roles and responsibilities to his peers, ensuring the smooth operation of the enterprise.

the spot
Diego’s dedication and leadership didn’t go unnoticed. He represented Tecumseh High School and the LISD TECH Center at the DECA State Career Development Conference in Detroit, showcasing his expertise against other school-run stores in Michigan. Subsequently, he seized the opportunity to compete internationally at ICDC in California. 

“I took my 40-page paper that I wrote for “the spOt” and presented some of the key points to a professional, said Diego. “She graded me based on my performance, based on how I hit these key metrics, and I competed against a lot of great other people from all around the world.”

Reflecting on his journey for the State and International conferences, Diego expressed his gratitude for the invaluable experiences gained through DECA and the support of his school community.

“This project has set me on a path towards business, marketing, and entrepreneurship,” he remarked. “I’m excited to pursue these interests further and, hopefully, start my own business one day.”

During the ICDC in California, Diego collaborated with schools from across the nation and around the globe as part of the SBE Academy. This interaction provided a valuable networking opportunity and allowed Diego to exchange innovative ideas to enhance “the spOt” and transform it into a more profitable and efficient learning lab for students.

diego and group
In his insightful advice to fellow students, Diego emphasized the pivotal role of networking in shaping their future endeavors. He stressed the importance of establishing connections within their desired fields, whether with professionals or peers, as a gateway to unique opportunities. Diego encourages his peers to step out of their comfort zones, highlighting the value of embracing new experiences.

“Just kind of putting yourself out there—I feel like it’s definitely always a great way to get involved in things you wouldn’t normally be involved in, but just putting yourself out there and being open to anything,” added Diego.

diego and group
As a graduating senior, Diego acknowledges the role of Tecumseh Public Schools and Tecumseh High School in shaping his future. “Tecumseh has really prepared me for my career and just kind of being a person in general,” he noted. “The staff are great, and Tecumseh is a great spot, and I wouldn’t wish to be anywhere else.”

Diego’s journey exemplifies the power of hands-on learning and the transformative impact of educational initiatives like DECA. His success highlights his achievements and underscores the excellence and innovation fostered within Tecumseh Public Schools.

Moving forward, Diego plans to leverage his experiences at TPS, the LISD TECH Center, and the ICDC to continue his pursuit of entrepreneurial endeavors. His drive and evident passion for business indicate he’s set to make a meaningful mark in entrepreneurship and beyond.