How to Recruit Professional and Alumni Members
By: Miri deahl, district II VP of campaigns
Recruiting members can be difficult, but it seems to be more difficult when it is adults. Professional members and alumni members are a phenomenal resource when it comes to creating a successful chapter. They count towards your chapter’s overall membership and they provide monetary support. When beginning your search for these members, start simple. Ask your parents and other family members, friends of your family, your boss, etc. By beginning with people you know, you will get more comfortable doing it.
The best way to convince someone to do something for you is to tell them what it will do for them. First of all, paying the membership dues are considered a donation and can be used for tax write-offs. Second, if it is a business, they can advertise to customers that they invest in the youth by supporting the local DECA chapter. And third, they will receive a really cool DECA sticker.
Another idea is to put together packages for different levels of donations. Potential sponsorship packages ideas are on the the Texas DECA website under chapter management resources. Additionally, there are editable letters to send to those who you are trying to recruit to be a professional or alumni member. (Side note, if you ever need assistance with something, check the website because there are so many helpful articles and resources!)
The most important thing in this is for the student members to be doing the work not the advisors. It looks a lot better to businesses when they see that the people they are investing in care enough about DECA to be seeking more support.
Also, let the new members know they can be as little or as much involved as they wish to be, keep them updated on what is happening in your chapter, and be sure to thank them (a nice letter or some yummy cookies will definitely let them know they are appreciated)! Happy recruiting!