Chelmsford High School sophomore Pranav Aburri impresses in the DECA International Career Conference

Sophomore Pranav Abburi Impresses in Debut Trip to DECA International Conference in Orlando

Chelmsford High School sophomore Pranav Aburri impresses in the DECA International Career ConferenceJuniors Garima Lalwani, Anika Mukka attend Emerging Leaders Series

CHELMSFORD, MA (June 9, 2023) – He just completed his sophomore year, but the feeling that Pranav Abburi is going to leave a significant legacy at Chelmsford High School is felt by many of his educators.

“One of the stronger points he has is the way he carries himself,” said longtime Business Education educator Tom Sousa.

Mr. Abburi represented CHS well at the Distributive Education Clubs of America (DECA) International Career Development Conference Apr. 21-26 in Orlando, where he was judged to have the top performance of his 15-student group in the Accounting Application Series role play.

“I’ve never taken an accounting class,” Mr. Abburi quipped. He now admits it is a field of study he’s exploring.

Mr. Abburi’s group was presented with a situation by the group’s judges, who were actual accountants and acted as owners of a business with a problem: creating a trial balance. Students were given only 10 minutes to prepare their solutions before presenting them to the judges.

“It’s nerve-racking,” Ms. Abburi said. “Some people struggled with it, but I stayed calm and cool during the role play. I think I did pretty well.”

It is a high-pressure situation which requires students to think and act quickly, Mr. Sousa noted. “With the way Pranav presented and spoke to the judges, he positioned himself to score very well,” he said. “Pranav did a very good job at preparing in the district and state levels.”

While he led his group in the first role play, Mr. Abburi thought he performed better in his second, Accounting for Inventory, but fell short of the top place. Students were given a list of products the judges’ fictitious company was selling and had to present what they felt was the best method of inventory: first-in, first-out (FIFO), last-in, first-out (LIFO), and weighted.

“In the second role play, there was more competition than the first,” Mr. Abburi noted.

Qualifying for the DECA International Conference requires placing among the top five at the district and state competitions. Mr. Abburi placed fourth at the Massachusetts DECA District 5 Conference at UMass Lowell in January, which included a role play and a 100-question multiple choice exam, and advanced to the DECA State Career Development Conference at the Prudential Center in Boston.

At the state conference, Mr. Abburi scored well on two role plays and another 100-question exam to finish in the top five to qualify for the International Conference.

Mr. Abburi was one of two CHS students to qualify for the International Conference, along with senior Rishi Ajmera, who scored very high in the District and State competitions but was unable to attend.

“Next year I want to take my best shot at winning the class,” Mr. Abburi said. “I’m really happy I was able to win something in my first year. I still want to improve. I want to learn from this competition and win something next year.”

Also attending the International Conference were juniors Garima Lalwani and Anika Mukka, who took part in the DECA Emerging Leader Series.

“Garima and Anika attended the Leadership Series to learn leadership traits to help us grow our chapter,” said Mr. Sousa, who noted that the 2020 Covid-19 outbreak detrimentally impacted membership.

Membership to CHS DECA has risen steadily, however, and currently has 34 members.


About Chelmsford Public Schools

The Chelmsford Public School District provides all students with multiple pathways to optimize their own potential for academic excellence, leadership, and social and emotional wellness. The mission of the Chelmsford Public Schools is to educate, engage, prepare, and empower well-rounded and knowledgeable learners to PERSEVERE through challenges, demonstrate RESPECT and INTEGRITY in their words and actions, are DEDICATED to their community, and display EMPATHY as global citizens while discovering and pursuing their full potential.  This PRIDE-driven culture enables all members of the school community to support the growth and development of students.  For more information, please visit