DECA: A Smart Start into the World of Business

On Jan. 4, 2013, high school students from all over the state of Wisconsin met to compete at the DECA district level. DECA, or Distributive Education Clubs of America, is a not-for-profit association of marketing students. DECA’s mission is to prepare emerging leaders and entrepreneurs for careers in business management, marketing, finance, hospitality, and management in high schools and colleges around the globe.

careers in business management“This year over 345 high school students, representing nine school districts, competed in the daylong event,” said Eric Siler, Lincoln High School marketing instructor and WRPS Career & Technical Education Coordinator, who aided in coordinating this year’s regional DECA event. “DECA District 2 communities represented were Adams-Friendship, Antigo, Auburndale, DC Everest, Medford, Minocqua, Mosinee, Wausau and Wisconsin Rapids. In addition to the student visitors, 70 competition judges were on campus for the event.”

The students that compete put in a lot of work. Before ever going to the competition, students must complete a 100-point exam. Once arriving at the competition, they complete another 100-point exam. Then the real fun begins. Students also participate in two role-play scenarios in their chosen area. These role-plays may include scenarios where students present ideas to a judge about how to market a hotel or restaurant, for example.

The top two students, or teams, in each event will advance to the State DECA Competition in Lake Geneva. From there, the top students will represent Wisconsin DECA at the national competition, held this year in Anaheim, Calif.

These competitive events could not function without the volunteer judges. The judges are business professionals that also come from all over Wisconsin to volunteer their time for this event. The Globe University-Wausau campus sent four volunteers to judge the 2013 DECA District Competition, held in Wisconsin Rapids.

Phil Handrick, business program chair; Lori Mott, college admissions representative; Sunny Slade, administrative assistant; and Kim Zellner, a student in the accounting program, all took part in this year’s district competition.

DECA has benefits for all involved. For students, DECA offers a first taste of a potential marketing career. For the volunteer judges, DECA offers a chance for business professionals to nurture students, those that might, one day, become coworkers.

A blog by Sunny Slade, Administrative Assistant, Globe University – Wausau