Major code BS6380
The Gladys W. and David H. Patton College of Education and Human Services
Department of Human and Consumer Sciences Education
Grover Center E160
Athens, OH 45701
Ann Paulins, contact person
The Retail Merchandising and Fashion Product Development program prepares you for retail management, marketing, distribution, and product development positions, such as buyer, store or corporate manager, visual merchandiser, manufacturer’s sales representative, and fashion coordinator. The Program and courses at Ohio University prepare students for dynamic careers in industry. The course of study includes professional development, knowledge of industry-specific business and sales applications, and hands-on retailing experiences. In addition, study tours to New York City and abroad enhance classroom instruction and provide valuable networking opportunities. The program works cooperatively with an advisory board composed of retailers, business people and educators in related fields. Faculty and students network with corporate representatives who provide internships and hire Retail Merchandising majors. Program resources provide insight into the ongoing development of our market-driven program. In addition, an historic costume collection is housed in our facilities and managed within our program. Your professional development will be enhanced through regular meetings with an academic advisor and through a sequence of professional development and retail content courses that will prepare you for the world of opportunities in retailing.
Career options include retail management, buying, design and product development, merchandising, visual presentation, quality control and wholesale sales and entrepreneurship. Our market-driven Retail Merchandising program prepares you to land the job of your dreams!
Major corporations such as The Limited, Inc. (and its divisions), The Gap, Federated Department Stores, Mercantile Stores, WalMart, Kohl’s, Target, Ann Taylor, Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, and J.C. Penney have employed OU Retail Merchandising and Fashion Product Development graduates. Graduates have also secured employment with various design companies and manufacturers including Bugle Boy, Halston, Betsey, Johnson, and Cejon. Alumni have landed specialized jobs such as fashion stylists, artistic consultants, fashion show coordinators , costumers for TV and motion pictures, apparel and textile designers.
The faculty in the Program are available to work with each student. It is our goal that each student realize his or her goals! We encourage you to attend career fairs at Ohio University and at other universities. Ohio University’s Career Services office regularly scheduled interviews with retail companies for both internships and entry-level positions. Additionally, companies seeking internship students often contact Ohio University for candidates. The faculty are here to guide you as you network with resource people including the Retail Merchandising and Fashion Product Development advisory board, alumni contacts, and other industry professionals.
Most entry level positions are as trainees - in merchandising, management, product development, or buying. You may begin your career as a manager in training at a major department store or within a specialty store, as a buyer trainee, or as a merchandise coordinator for a major label. Secondary positions such as sales representative, buyer, divisional merchandise manager, fashion coordinator, stylist, and production coordinator are typically available to people with 3 to 6 years of experience in retailing. Retail Merchandising and Fashion Product Development graduates may also find employment in departments of human resources of retail firms or with design and manufacturing companies.
Students interested in the Program will enter Ohio University with a premajor code of ND8835 (Preretail Merchandising and Fashion Product Development). To be admitted to the major, you must apply and be accepted after successful completion of 7 courses and achieving an accumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher.