Chatham Charter DECA Only NC Chapter Recognized for Two Outstanding School-Based Enterprises (SBE)


Chatham Charter DECA recently achieved Gold Certification for Castle Café, the chapter’s Food Operations, and Gold Re-Certification for its Retail Operations School-Based Enterprises. The chapter was among 461 school-based enterprises achieving Gold Certification and Re-Certification for the 2022-2023 school year and will be recognized during DECA’s International Career Development Conference in Orlando, FL. Chatham Charter was one of only two NC schools to achieve this level, and the only NC school to achieve Gold Certification in two SBEs.

A school-based enterprise (SBE) is an entrepreneurial operation in a school setting that provides goods and services to meet the needs of the market. SBEs are managed and operated by students as hands-on learning laboratories that integrate National Curriculum Standards in marketing, finance, hospitality and management. DECA advisors have utilized this effective educational tool for over four decades to provide their students with realistic and practical learning experiences that reinforce classroom instruction, enhance 21st century skill development, and prepare students for college and careers. 

The Chatham Charter DECA members who contributed to the certification were Natalie Hamel, Ariana Rivera-Romo, Elphie Spillman and Colton Todd, with the assistance of their DECA chapter advisors, Ashley Wood and Larisa Spillman.

“DECA’s School-based Enterprise Certification Program is a rigorous process designed to help DECA members demonstrate their classroom learning in a practical, learning laboratory, and then translate that into meaningful outcomes,” said Christopher Young, CAE, Chief Program Officer at DECA Inc. “These DECA members are practicing important workplace readiness skills while preparing for college and careers.”

DECA’s School-based Enterprise Certification Program provides recognition for outstanding achievement by school-based enterprises and to motivate SBEs to strive for excellence and growth. SBEs can be certified at three levels: bronze, silver or gold. In order to apply for the certification, SBEs must submit extensive documentation that explains how the SBE demonstrates the practice of various marketing and retail standards. A review committee evaluates the documentation to determine which level of certification has been achieved. DECA’s School-based Enterprise programs are sponsored by Intuit and Otis Spunkmeyer Inc. 

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