An Open Letter to the Members of Collegiate DECA

Hi Collegiate DECA,

You may know me incredibly well, others may have shaken my hand at a conference and some may have no idea who I am. Regardless of what category you fall into, I now dedicate my time to making your Collegiate DECA experience better.

At the 2017 International Career Development Conference in Anaheim, Calif., I was elected to serve as your Collegiate DECA President for the 2017–2018 term alongside four of the most talented and dedicated individuals I’ve had the pleasure of meeting.

Upon hearing my name called, I was elated. My friends from back home surrounded me, and the excitement was something I couldn’t have imagined. Standing on stage next to four people I barely knew at the time and waving to the crowd was surreal, but it was an important moment because it marked the moment these four individuals and myself were no longer just acquaintances.

At that moment, we became a team.

Pictured Left to Right: Joshua Koshy, Paul Averhart, Jake Jardine, Joe Esposito and Darcie Hill.

As the celebrations closed and the conference hall began to empty, the reality began to sink in for us. Campaigning turned to service. Vision turned to mission.

We’re not here for the cheering, the excitement or the spotlight. We’re here to serve Collegiate DECA.

So here is our deal with you. We are going to make some promises, and you all can message us at any time, ask for updates and hold the team and myself accountable.



1. As representatives of over 15,000 delegates, we will hold your interests at the core of our decisions.

You elected us to serve you, and that’s how this relationship will work. As a team we will take the time to know and understand our associations, chapters and delegates. After all, without you there is no us, and your best interests should be the foundation and guide for our plan of action and decisions.

2. The team and I will create a plan of action reflecting the platforms in which we campaigned on.

You elected us for a reason, so let’s stand for the beliefs we were elected to represent. Although I can’t guarantee every campaign platform will be executed in its entirety, I can guarantee you that we will work our hardest to create and execute a plan of action that reflects each officer’s platform.

3. Our work this year will be structured to guarantee future success; not only change within our term.

One of my favorite books, Good to Great by Jim Collins states that

“Turning good into great takes energy, but the building of momentum adds more energy back into the pool than it takes out.”
― James C. Collins

Our team will commit our time and energy into Collegiate DECA, to build momentum for not only 2017–2018, but for years to come. We will work towards implementing things during our term, that not only make changes this year, but can be built on for the foreseeable future.

This is the mindset our team will operate with, and we focus on sustainable changes for Collegiate DECA.

We don’t want to just put time into this position; we want to put our hearts and souls into it. The entire officer team is honored to have been elected to serve Collegiate DECA, and we promise to do everything in our power to serve you to the best of our abilities.

Follow Jake on Twitter @JakeJardineDECA and meet the entire Collegiate DECA Executive Officer Team here.

Categories: Chapter Resources, Executive Officers, Leadership