Jackson Ward

DECA is a co-curricular association of marketing students in classrooms around the globe. Take Sophomores Jordan Prejean and Zach Calder for example. They are both in marketing 101, which is labeled as a class under the DECA organization, this year and they both say that they enjoy it.

“We learn how to market products such as advertising, we also learn how to sell the products that are being advertised” said Calder when asked about the main thing he does in marketing 101. Prejean said his favorite thing about marketing 101 is “it gives me a better understanding about the real world and it can help me in the future with my career”.

There are other classes organized under the DECA organization such as Sports and Entertainment Marketing and Entrepreneurship With Creative Marketing which are both advanced classes to be taken after Marketing 101. Students taking any of these classes have been preparing for the districts competition on Thursday, February 8th at the Independence Center.

“To prepare emerging leaders and entrepreneurs in marketing, finance, hospitality, and management in high schools and colleges around the globe” said Marketing 101 teacher and DECA advisory Susan Howard when asked what DECA’s main goal/mission is.

Students have been preparing for the districts competition during class working on projects and taking tests that are similar to what they are tested on during the competitions the entire school year. At the tournaments boys dress in business attire such as dress shoes, slacks, belt, a button up shirt, and a tie although a blazer is not required unless a student qualifies to state or nationals.

“At districts marketing 101 students do a role play and test while advanced students present projects such as community service, ad campaign or business plan that they have worked on all year. “Students must qualify for state to attend in March and students must also qualify for ICDC which is the international competition in Atlanta, Georgia” said Howard when asked what the competitions were like.

“Seventeen different schools and over 600 students attend districts, several thousand students attend the state wide competition and around 13,000 students attend the international competition.” said Howard when asked how many schools and students go to the competitions.

“Most advanced students enjoy participating in DECA and the challenges involved. Students recognize a need for DECA classes to be successful at the next level whether it be college or work. Most intro students are terrified of going to competitions until they go and realize it can be fun” said Howard when asked how DECA influences students in a positive way.

At the competitions students compete in different events such as finance, hospitality and tourism, business management, and marketing. “It’s kind of like studying for a test, a student can’t just walk in and be good at it, I practice doing the role play with my parents and we practice taking the tests in class” said Calder when asked what preparing for districts is like. “The 100 question test at the competition is over everything the 101 students have learned the whole year” said Prejean when asked what the tests are like.

Taking a DECA class is a great opportunity to help a student in their future career, no matter what it is because a student has to market themselves in any career they choose. “I would say they definitely should do it, it is a great class and a great learning environment. Both marketing teachers are nice and helpful, they genuinely care about every student and want them to succeed” said Calder when asked what he would say to a student interested in taking a DECA class.