Hamilton High School’s Charger Corner was among 35 school stores nationwide that earned Gold certification this year and will be recognized at the DECA International Career Development Conference in Salt Lake City.
Hamilton students who worked on attaining certification were store managers Elizabeth Fricke and Erin Geszvain with assistance from faculty advisor and marketing teacher Skip Hay. Fricke and Geszvain will present at state and international career development conferences about customer service best practices that they learned by operating Charger Corner. Last year, Hamilton was among the top 16 school-based enterprises (SBE) in the nation.
Charger Corner has been a Gold Level Certified SBE for six years. DECA’s initial certification process requires submission of an 85-page manual documenting the SBE’s exemplary practices in 12 areas. A certified SBE then is able to apply for recertification for the next four years. This year, Hamilton students were required to complete the initial certification process again. Four Wisconsin SBE’s received Gold certification and five were recertified.
SBEs are effective educational tools in helping to prepare students for the transition from school to work or college. DECA developed the SBE Certification Program to recognize outstanding achievement and motivate excellence and growth. The program provides enterprises with standards for model school store operation. A DECA review committee determines if a school store is certified with a bronze, silver or gold designation. The gold certification is the highest among three levels.
DECA is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit student organization preparing its membership for careers in marketing, management, finance and hospitality. It has more than 200,000 members nationwide. Approximately 105 students are involved in Hamilton’s DECA Chapter.