DECA, originally the Distributive Education Clubs of America, was started as a non-profit vocational youth organization for students enrolled in Distributive Education programs in American public schools and vocational schools. The national organization was officially started in 1947.
DECA is now in all 50 states as well as chapters in Canada, Mexico, Germany, and England. It was designed to provide students with a leadership component, as well as social and community service responsibility. In addition, DECA was to provide a way for students to apply classroom learning in competitive events, projects, and school store participation.
In the 1980’s Distributive Education became Marketing Education, but the student organization remained DECA. It continues to be a non-profit career-technical student organization in high schools and CTE centers, as well as a post-secondary level organization in a number of colleges in the United States. While the focus has evolved to target the career areas of marketing, business administration and management, hospitality and tourism, and finance, the enrollment has expanded to virtually all business students in many areas of DECA exposure. Enrollment guidelines can vary depending on local state or provincial planning.
Today, DECA serves over 200,000 secondary school students, as well as college students in selected schools throughout the United States and Canada. For detailed information about DECA, visit the website at deca.org.