One of the main objectives of this year’s State Officer Team is advocacy. Advocating is simply talking with someone, whether it’s a student, principal, or in this case, an elected Representative, about the importance of DECA. The State Officer Team had a great start to the advocacy goal this year as we traveled to Washington, D.C. to meet with our congresspeople. The team promoted DECA and other Career and Technical Student Organizations (CTSOs) while sharing the value and impact of Career and Technical Education (CTE) with various Oregon Congressmen and women; however, the State Officer Team wasn’t done yet. We came back home and started advocating with our local Senators and Representatives.
On August 31, your District III Vice-President, Dhrushil Patel, had the honor of meeting with Representative Reschke, Representative of the 56th district of Oregon, and discussed the need for continued CTE funding, and the importance each CTSO has on workforce development. Dhru shared stories of DECA members and showed how they were impacted by DECA. Following the stories, Dhru and Rep. Reschke discussed the CTE Revitalization Grants, which make it easier for students to connect with employers in career fields that we’re interested in. Since the Representative serves on the Workforce Development Committee, he is well informed and in favor of the grant. Rep. Reschke is a firm believer that Oregon CTE should be given additional money and will continue to work for this belief.
Rep. Reschke had never been formally introduced to DECA, so Dhru was able to invite the Representative to join Oregon DECA as a professional member. Dhru also shared his SCDC and ICDC experiences with the Representative Reschke. Representative Reschke was so interested in DECA that Dhru invited him to SCDC, so he himself could see for himself why we all love DECA so much.
This is the first of many local Oregon legislative visits that your State Officer Team is going to do this year. The Oregon DECA State Officer Team is excited about the year of advocacy ahead, and we would like your help. Keep an eye out for this year’s Oregon DECA letter writing campaign coming out soon. This is your opportunity to send a letter to your Senator or Representative to show them how much DECA means to you!