Hesston College to offer student DECA opportunity

Hesston College Horizon staff meeting

Hesston College will launch a collegiate DECA chapter known as the Hesston College Emerging Leadership Team with the well-known leadership organization as an extracurricular option for students with the start of the 2020-21 year in August.

DECA is a global organization focused on preparing high school- and college-age leaders and entrepreneurs for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality and management, as well as equipping them to lead throughout any career path.

“The DECA Emerging Leadership Team is a great opportunity for any entrepreneurial-minded student who wants to improve their leadership skills through experiential learning opportunities, including business-related competitive events,” said Debbie McAlister, Hesston College director of business education. “We’re excited to be able to offer another avenue for students pursuing all majors to build up their marketable skills in this way.”

DECA is well known for its competitions that allow students to test their experience, skill and knowledge in simulated real-life situations. In addition to the competition team, Hesston students participating in DECA will have a variety of other resume-building benefits and be eligible for the Hesston College Emerging Leaders Scholarship that can cover from 45 to 65 percent of tuition. Other opportunities for DECA students include credits toward the college’s honors program for high achieving students, leadership coaching, experiential opportunities in campus leadership projects and event organization and hosting experience.

Students do not need to be involved in DECA at the high school level to be eligible for collegiate participation or the scholarship.

“The DECA organization is committed to providing students at its member institutions with academic preparation, the importance of service to the community, professional responsibility and leadership skills,” said McAlister. “These same values are paramount to the Hesston College community and will be enhanced through DECA events.”

With a traditional focus on the first two years of a four-year college experience, Hesston College has long been known for providing hands-on experiential learning opportunities such as internships and other leadership experiences for students as early as the freshman and sophomore years. The DECA Emerging Leadership Team will add even more enhanced experiential learning opportunities.

As a DECA institution, students participating through Hesston College’s affiliation will be eligible for honors and recognition for their work and success on a wider scale. They will also gain further learning through participation in forums and conferences hosted by the organization and its institutional members.

Prospective students interested in the DECA experience at Hesston College can contact McAlister for further information and action steps at debbie.mcalister@hesston.edu.