DECA is More Than Your Chapter

DECA is more than your chapter.

What does this mean?

While it may seem simple, many people in the DECA world ignore it. They do this because it is easy to forget there are others. DECA is more than your chapter means: Your chapter has the ability to make an impact not only within your school with its members but also throughout your community and association. After all, one of DECA’s guiding principles is to prepare the next generation to be community-oriented. I think it is important that we stress connecting and making a difference in our communities.

This raises another question: How do you connect with your community in order to make a difference?

Here is my three-step guide to ensuring your definition of DECA includes more than just your local chapter:

1. Connect

This is one of the most effective ways of reaching outside of your chapter and truly making a difference within your community. My advice is to connect with your local service organizations and form a relationship with them. Whether this is with Rotary International, the Kiwanis Club or another organization, they will accept you with open arms and would love to hear about the good that DECA is doing within your school.

2. Engage

This is the “fun” part of stepping outside of your chapter – the hands-on portion. This is where you get to utilize your connections and work alongside them to truly make a difference within your community. Whether it is working with Habitat for Humanity to build houses or ringing bells during the holidays with the Salvation Army, your chapter can make a big difference. This will also allow you to take pictures and inform the public and your community that we, DECA, are not just another “student organization”. We are a part of the community.

3. Inform

This can be done in two ways and both are equally as important:

  1. Local media such as a school newsletter or community newspaper
  2. Social media platforms such as Twitter, Instagram and Facebook

Option one will become easier as you begin to connect. The easiest way is to search out the publisher for your local newspaper. For option two, if you have not already, I would suggest establishing social media accounts for your chapter. It is important that when you post on one social media platform, you share a similar message on all other platforms to maximize your impact.

By connecting, engaging and informing, our DECA chapters will be making a difference and earning the respect of our local communities. DECA is more than your chapter – DECA is part of the community. Get out there and show them what DECA is!

Follow Dalton on Twitter and Instagram @decacrvp.

Categories: Chapter Development, Chapter Resources, Chapter Resources (Home Page Teaser)

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