February 26, 2018

Finding Your Inner Leader

Author: Christopher Kusumonegoro, Vice President of Northern California

Everyone knows that DECA is a business organization. From the various competitive conferences, it’s clear that students are equipped with real-world skills and trained for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality, and management. But did you know that DECA also strongly emphasizes leadership development? That’s right! A key component in DECA’s mission statement is to “prepare emerging leaders” and this organization is filled with opportunities to accomplish it.
An important part of California DECA’s leadership culture is the existence of our many levels of officer teams – district, state, and national – which exemplify our mission by providing many opportunities for students to take action. Each level is a wonderful opportunity for students to take action and serve others on different scopes while gaining crucial life skills such as communication and teamwork.
DECA provides leadership training in many forms, and one of them is through DECA’s Emerging Leader Series, a comprehensive leadership program for members.  The goal of this program is to empower DECA members to provide effective leadership by setting goals, working cohesively as a team, and implementing their projects.  There are separate academies designated for different groups:  IGNITE for members, ELEVATE for chapter officers, and EMPOWER for association officers.  These academies will take place at DECA International Career Development Conference (ICDC), and ELEVATE and EMPOWER are also available at DECA Emerging Leader Summit (ELS).
Finally, DECA hosts two additional conferences to help train leaders:

Leadership Development Conferences

Leadership Development Conferences are single day conferences held in October and divided between Northern California and Southern California DECA.  In these conferences, members spend the day participating in workshops such as ELEVATE, forming stronger bonds with their chapter, and meeting other leaders throughout the different chapters in their district.  This is an amazing conference that all DECA members should join to help discover and refine their leadership skills!

Western Region Leadership Conference

The Western Region Leadership Conference is a three-day conference that will bring together over 2,600 students throughout the Western Region of DECA.  Members who participate in this conference will have the incredible opportunity to interact with industry leaders and inspirational speakers, and experience cutting-edge exhibits, powerful workshops, and so much more! Workshops this year will be in the following categories: Business and Industry, Competition Training, Networking, and Leadership Development.
Through workshops, conferences, and networking, these opportunities are designed to hone your leadership skills and help you find your inner leader.

About California DECA
California DECA is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) Career and Technical Student Organization, endorsed by the California Department of Education. With over 4,500 members in 59 schools throughout California, California DECA works to prepare emerging leaders and entrepreneurs in four fields of business: marketing, finance, hospitality, and management. For more information about California DECA, visit


Contact Information
To learn more about this story, please contact:
California DECA