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Healthy Competition Teaches College and Career Readiness


Last week we posted a story on emerging applications of entrepreneurship in education. This week, we’ll highlight a more traditional program—one that’s promoted entrepreneurship and business skills in Missouri’s schools for more than 65 years: DECA.

DECA’s mission is to prepare emerging leaders and entrepreneurs in marketing, finance, hospitality, and management, and its competitions—which happen at the district and state level—give students a chance to practice those skills in an environment that’s just as competitive as the real world is.

DECA’s Comprehensive Competitive Events Framework is focused on academic and community development, professionalism, and teamwork. Specifically, DECA trains Missouri’s students to be academically prepared, community oriented, professionally responsible, and leadership savvy.

Students can compete in DECA competitions individually or on small teams. Competitions cover a variety of areas, including advertising, entrepreneurship, merchandising, business development, business law and ethics, finance, and management.

Competitive DECA events are designed to be appropriate for each instructional level, and to be a tool for teachers to use to improve teaching and learning. DECA competitions are tied directly to learning standards in schools, and in order to be a DECA member and competitor, students must be enrolled in relevant classroom coursework.

Learn more about Missouri’s learning standards.

Competitions are a way for students to earn advanced credit or to meet college admissions requirements. DECA students learn real-life business and entrepreneurship skills that prepare them—and inspire them—for college and career: More than 90 percent of DECA members plan to further their studies DECA-related subjects, or to become entrepreneurs, and 30 percent are very interested in starting their own businesses. (source)

Missouri’s relationship with DECA is long-standing. It was one of the charter states of the National DECA program in 1948, and its membership has grown to more than 9,000 alumni today. (source) Internationally, DECA has more than 200,000 members. Missouri DECA is one of the many ways that business-minded high school students can pave the way for college and career.

Learn more about DECA:
DECA - college and career readiness
DECA Competitions
Missouri DECA
Missouri DECA Scholarships

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