DECA students at Tucumcari High School will be serving pizzas, corn dogs and burritos to fellow students beginning in January. The idea sprang from a conversation between DECA advisor Robert Pacheco and school cafeteria supervisor Brenda McDonald.
Pacheco, a marketing education instructor, said his DECA students will be serving the hot food daily at lunchtime inside Pacheco’s classroom. “It makes it more convenient for students because they don’t have to go to MESA cafeteria. They will be able to eat in my classroom or take the food outside,” said Pacheco. “All 21 of our DECA students will rotate as food servers”
Pacheco said the foray into food service will begin on a trial basis. “The DECA members will be making posters and learning how to market the snack bar,” said Pacheco. “They will also be conducting marketing research surveys to find out how to provide better service and attract more customers.”
McDonald said if all goes well more food items could be added to the snack bar later. “We will be preparing the food in the cafeteria and shipping it to the high school in bins that will keep the food warm,” she said. Pacheco said the snack bar will give DECA members the opportunity to learn how to make person-to-person business transactions. ”They will be getting hands-on learning in how to serve customers and make correct change,” said Pacheco. “Customer service in the marketplace is one of the main things DECA teaches.”
DECA, or Distribution Education Clubs of America, is an organization devoted to teaching sound business principles to students. The DECA chapter is open to any student enrolled in marketing education courses. Pacheco hopes his DECA students will eventually earn financial profit from the snack bar venture.