Student Spotlight: Joe Kaminski

Business student takes 1st place at DECA ICDC

Joe Kaminski, 19, is a freshman at Inver Hills Community College earning a Business Transfer Pathway Associate of Science (A.S.) degree. Joe competed at the Collegiate DECA International Career Development Conference (ICDC) in April 2019 in Orlando, Florida, taking home first place in the Sales Management Meeting (Marketing Career Cluster) competition by besting more than 100 other competitors from around the world.

Joe also competed in the Hotel and Lodging (Hospitality + Tourism Career Cluster) event at the ICDC, where more than 1,500 Collegiate DECA members also participated in Professional Development Academies and Management Institutes. He advanced to the ICDC by taking first place in two events, Retail Management plus Hotel and Lodging, at the Minnesota Collegiate DECA State Career Development Conference (SCDC) in February 2019 in Minnetonka, Minnesota.

The Sales Management Meeting competition at the ICDC gave Joe the chance test his ability to design and pitch a compelling sales concept in a high-pressure setting.

“Competing at the ICDC helped me find out what I’m truly good at,” Joe said. “I’ve always been able to work well with people, but actually presenting a sales pitch to the CEO and chief recruiting officer of England Logistics and the director of sales at the Hilton Orlando was a challenge.”

Also representing Inver Hills at the ICDC were DECA students Trinh Pham, Britta Neumann and Chase Hildreth.

Joe explained that the competitors were given a case situation and then prompted to find a solution. The situation in this instance involved a company selling acai berries, the fruit of a South American palm tree. The company was having trouble shipping product cross-country on time with efficient communication and consistent pricing. Joe’s task involved formulating a solution in 30 minutes and then presenting his solution to a panel of judges—the Hilton and England executives—in an effective and persuasive manner during a 15-minute time period.

“I studied the England Logistics website to get a foundation of basic knowledge,” Joe said. “It helped a lot that I’ve been around the business world my whole life, but I still needed to think quickly on my feet while building a rapport with the panel. The focus of my presentation was coming together as one: one customer, one employee, one community.”

After he graduates from Inver with his A.S. degree, Joe is looking forward to enrolling at the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management to earn a Bachelor of Science in Business (B.S.B.) in Entrepreneurial Managment. He is focusing his career plans on launching his own business, a sales consultant firm in the Twin Cities area.

“While our Accounting and Business ACBSP-accredited programs offer an affordable quality transfer pathway to four-year institutions, DECA prepares students to become the next generation of emerging leaders as entrepreneurs in marketing, finance, hospitality and management.”
Dr. Hamid H Kazeroony, SHRM-SCP, SPHR
Business Faculty
Inver Hills Community College
(left to right) Trinh Pham, Britta Neumann, Hamid Kazeroony, Chase Hildreth, Joe Kaminski

DECA ICDC gallery

More about Joe…

A 2018 graduate of Woodbury High School, Joe played varsity baseball for the Royals for three years as a pitcher and third baseman. This summer he will be coaching youth baseball for the Woodbury Athletic Association (WAA). He works 20 hours a week while going to school as a bartender at Red Lobster in Oakdale.

Joe’s dad, Paul, is the director of technology for Innovative Office Solutions; his mom, Chris, is an expert in restaurant management. Joe’s brother, Jack, 18, is a student at the Maplewood Alternative High School. Joe also has a dog, a 1.5-year-old huskie/golden retriever named Lily. Joe’s family loves baseball and are Chicago Cubs fans, although Joe likes the Minnesota Twins. He also follows the Vikings and Wild.

When he’s not studying or working, Joe enjoys working out. He has a personal trainer who creates a CrossFit regimen for him that involves exercising two to three hours a day, six days a week. Joe resides in Woodbury, Minnesota.

More about the Business Transfer Pathway A.S. degree…

The Business Transfer Pathway A.S. offers you a powerful option: the opportunity to complete an Associate of Science (A.S.) degree with course credits that directly transfer to designated business bachelor’s degree programs at Minnesota State universities. The entire curriculum has been carefully designed to guarantee junior-year status to students who have been admitted to one of the seven Minnesota State universities. There, students can complete their bachelor’s degree by earning 60 additional credits.

Learn more…

Joe Kaminski Q & A

Joe Kaminski
Joe Kaminski

What advice would you give business students thinking about joining DECA?
Absolutely do it. Best decision of my life so far. Through DECA, I’ve built up a network of 100+ people. I’ve already had three internship offers, and I’ve improved my interviewing skills big-time.

What is one thing every Inver Hills business student should know?
I would say the biggest thing is devoting your time to what you’re passionate about.

Three words that describe you as a college student:

What did you enjoy most about participating in the DECA conferences?
Meeting so many different people. Also, I have to admit I enjoyed getting my name called for first place in front of 2,500 people.

What is your greatest strength as a college student?
Academics—I’m super-focused right now.

What is the most challenging aspect of doing business?
The unknown. You’ve need to adapt and learn how to innovate. The business environment is constantly changing.

Joe Kaminski 12 Answers

  1. Favorite sport or physical activity: Baseball
  2. Place you would most like to visit: United Arab Emirates
  3. The most exciting thing you’ve ever done: Cliff-jumping in Cozumel
  4. Three things you would do if you won a $1 billion lottery: 1) Buy a house. 2) Buy a car. 3) Start my business.
  5. Favorite TV show you’re watching now: Friends
  6. Best movie you’ve seen lately: Avengers: Endgame
  7. One thing you most want to accomplish in life: Start a family of my own for sure.
  8. Your national bird if you could have one: Bald eagle
  9. Dream occupation: Fortune 500 company CEO and president
  10. Person you would most like to meet: Warren Buffett
  11. Skill you would most like to learn and master: Communication
  12. Most important issue or problem facing humankind: Economic and social consequences of global warming
Learn more about Business programs at Inver Hills by contacting:

Hamid Kazeroony
Business Faculty

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