Grafton High DECA earns THRIVE status


Grafton High DECA earns THRIVE status
Grafton High School (GHS) DECA was among 525 chapters that achieved THRIVE level recognition this year. (Photo by/Dakota Antelman)

GRAFTON – Grafton High School (GHS) DECA was among 525 chapters that achieved THRIVE level recognition this year and will be commended at DECA’s International Career Development Conference held April 22-25, 2023 in Orlando, Fla.

Each fall, DECA offers four campaigns for chapters to complete as part of a program of leadership for the year. 

These campaigns are designed to grow membership engagement and build lasting partnerships within the school and local community. Chapters that achieve THRIVE level receive a commemorative pennant, flag and plaque. The chapters also have an opportunity to participate in the ICDC. 

In order to receive THRIVE level recognition, the chapter completed two out of three chapter campaigns, including the community service campaign, ethical leadership campaign and promotional campaign. Alternatively, the chapter could have participated in the membership campaign, which challenged the chapter to attain two of three goals: recruit 20 professional members; recruit 20 alumni members; or increase student membership by 20 more members from the previous school year. 

The Grafton High School DECA members who contributed to the THRIVE recognition were numerous, with the chapter co-presidents, Brie Dwyer and Amelia Whitney, leading the charge with the assistance of their adviser, Jeff Maxwell.

This is the chapter’s first year of gaining national recognition under Maxwell’s guidance. The chapter made cards for soldiers overseas who were away over the holidays; cleaned up a park in Grafton; volunteered at the Community Harvest Project 5K; presented to eighth-graders at Grafton Middle School about the benefits of joining DECA; and had several alumni explain how DECA has helped them in college and beyond.

Maxwell has been at Grafton High since July 2018, when he was hired as a business teacher and the school’s DECA advisor.

“There is no substitute for experience: there’s not an app you can download, not a book you can read … either you are directly involved in an event, or you are not,” said Maxwell. “And GHS DECA gives the students experiences that they simply cannot get otherwise. I am proud of their involvement, their dedication, their leadership, their partnership, their motivation, and the extraordinary people they are blossoming into. These experiences will give them skills and memories that will last their lifetime. I am honored and flattered to be a part of this.”

Upcoming events include a meet and greet with business professionals, an annual winter gala at Highfields Golf and Country Club, and a spring field day for families at Grafton High.


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