PLAINFIELD — November is national DECA month, and for Plainfield High School’s burgeoning program, that means gaining hopeful notoriety for one of the most growing clubs in the school over the last three years.
“A lot of people don’t even know what it stands for, which is Distributing Education Clubs of America,” says Michelle Goda, a PHS senior and a national state officer for the club.
Goda says that when she entered PHS, the DECA club there had only 10 members. Last year, they had around 115 and this year they’re climbing up to near that number as well.
“We want to raise awareness to gain more students so we can create better business students for what we want to go into,” she said.
The club will do a host of fundraisers throughout this month, including trying to raise funds for Thanksgiving baskets that they are handing out to families in need from each school in the corporation. They will also have fundraisers at the Plainfield Red Robin restaurant on Nov. 27 and at Culver’s restaurant in town on Nov. 28.
She says the blueprint is there for the program to take off, but a key is raising funds to be able to take club members to state and national competitions, as well as creating a pipeline with younger students that make the transition to the club seamless in high school.
“Awareness comes from students realizing the gains from it,” Goda said. “It’s become more publicized in our school. Now we’re making advanced marketing students compete and that’s gotten new members. We want to reach out to other schools in our community and we’ve learned that if you ask the other elementary schools for their help, that reaches the parents. It’s kind of giving you a preview show of what’s to come and parents say ‘this is cool. I wish I had that when I was in high school.’”