Air Academy High School's Student News Publication

The Jetstream Journal

Air Academy High School's Student News Publication

The Jetstream Journal

Air Academy High School's Student News Publication

The Jetstream Journal

Administrators Fully Support DECA

Admin Mean Business
Kaitlyn Marks
Assistant Principal, Kali Maxwell ordering a drink from a Kadet Coffee employee, Blaise Horsfall.

Behind the scenes of Air Academy High School’s nationally renowned business program, is the school administration (Daniel Olsen, High School Principal; Anna Keilman, Assistant Principal; Kali Maxwell, Assistant Principal; Liz Walhof, Assistant Principal; Sean Whitson, Assistant Principal), the puppet masters behind every executive operation and decision at Air Academy, including programs like DECA.  

In only five years, the business department has blossomed into the thriving program that it is today, with over three hundred members, and many attending state and national competitions this year. 

“The administrators of Air Academy are so supportive of our business program. In fact, Kadet Coffee was Mr. Olsen’s idea. He was also the one who took the initiative to get KC2 built out and started when our program grew to the point where we needed another location,” business department advisor, Lindsay Bornhofen said.

Dan Olsen, the school’s principal, has been a key player in the success of Air Academy’s school-based enterprise programs, including Kadet Coffee, Kadetea, and Kadet Enterprises, a customizable printing company developed earlier this year.

“Mr. Olsen has also come to judge at our prep nights as well as travel with us to various competitions. He traveled with us to the National FBLA group in 2022 to Chicago, and we had a great time getting to know him outside of school. It’s just fun for him too to see what the kids do and how our program works,” Bornhofen said. 

With a multitude of responsibilities and dedications, the attention and care that is put into the business program goes to show how involved administrators at Air Academy are. 

“We attend events with DECA. We help support them, supervise, and chaperone. Anything that they need, any scenario that pops up, admin is willing and ready to help support DECA because it’s a great group, great kids, and they do so much for our school,” Assistant Principal, Sean Whitson explained.  

When there is any opportunity to support and participate in Air Academy’s business program, admin jump at the chance to do so. 

“Some of the ways that we’ve supported are obviously financial support, getting their businesses up and running, but also attending their competitions, making sure that they have support and subs to cover them, and making sure their students have what they need to be successful in the competitions,” Principal, Dan Olsen said. 

From “[helping] students find their name tags”, to “walking through and talking with students to see how they’re feeling”, administrators are a huge morale booster at district, state and national conferences. 

“[We] get a feeling for if they’re nervous, confident, or ready to go, and try to encourage them to get ready for their competition,” Whitson explained. 

Many of the admin have served as voluntary competitive events judges and gone on to attend every year to support the program. 

“Going to Beaver Creek last year, that was my first time there. I was a first time judge. It was a little nerve wracking. Exciting, but also nerve wracking. I had a lot of fun,” Whiston said of his experience at the Vail Invitational in Beaver Creek, Colorado. 

From prep nights to pre competition pep talks, admin have a massive role to play in the progress and prosperity of Air Academy’s business program. 

“The goal for myself, and I know the rest of our administration, is to try and support all of our programs to the best of our ability. DECA is a program that has grown by leaps and bounds,” Principal, Dan Olsen said. 

The growth and development of DECA has been exceptional — far beyond what anyone could have expected of the business program. Air Academy’s administration deserves a standing ovation.

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About the Contributor
Kaitlyn Marks
Kaitlyn Marks, Op-Ed Editor
Hey, I'm Kaitlyn! I'm a junior at Air Academy, and a first year Jetstream Journal editor. I love philodendrons and literary devices, big cats and small dogs, dancing when I eat good food and reading an abnormal amount of fanfiction when I should be sleeping. I'm excited to share my voice and bring diverse perspectives to the Jetstream Journal this year.

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