DECA, explained



The Gloucester High School DECA team made its mark at the District 6 competition and is headed to states. But some people may be asking, what is this club, and how can I join? 

DECA stands for Distributive Education Clubs of America, and it is a club at 3,200 schools. According to the DECA website, “DECA prepares emerging leaders and entrepreneurs for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality and management in high schools and colleges around the globe.” 

At the state competitions, high schools from around the state compete, state officers are elected, and each chapter gets one electoral vote to choose next year’s officers. Students work hard, compete, there are formal dinners, and award ceremonies. Typically the second night there is a social event such as a dance party after the competition. Students can also meet and greet other DECA members. 

If a DECA member is interested in design, there are opportunities to create the state specific pins that can be traded later on at the international conference. Another opportunity can be found with the t-shirts that are handed out at the state competition to match DECA’s theme for the year.  This year’s theme is “Maximize Your Momentum.” There are hundreds of submissions every year and the winner is given the chance to attend the state as well as international conferences to see their product in action.

“As a teacher I love working with my students outside the classroom and bringing our business class to life in a real world setting.  DECA prepares students for the workforce and college,” DECA advisor and GHS business teacher Christine Simmons said. 

At the most recent competition, GHS DECA members placed 1st- 4th in categories such as Business Law and Ethics, Sports and Entertainment , virtual games and the stock market game. 

After members compete in their respective districts, they can qualify to go to the state wide competition. Massachusetts DECA allows each District to send their top 4 members in each category. At the state competition, approximately 3,000 students compete at the Boston Copley Plaza Marriott Hotel. Students compete, and during their off time they can shop, grab lunch and use the amenities. 

The DECA team looks forward to competing against other schools and learning more about business at the state competition.