Textiles, Merchandising & Fashion Design Faculty and Students Attend the 2012 Dallas Career Day

Textiles, Merchandising & Fashion Design Faculty and Students Attend the 2012 Dallas Career Day

23 Aug 2012    

Dallas Career Day participants listen to TMFD alum Kristina Bruder in JCP's color library

Twenty-six Textiles, Merchandising & Fashion Design students, accompanied by Senior Lecturer Carol Easley, Visiting Lecturer Sandra Starkey and Department Chair and Professor Michael James, travelled to the Dallas/Fort Worth area from April 11th through 14th to attend the 39th Dallas Career Day and to visit several fashion industry companies.   Dallas Career Day, sponsored by Fashion Group International, was, according to its website homepage “conceived as a way to provide a philanthropic, educational outreach program for college and university students seeking careers in the fashion and lifestyle industries.”

Dallas Career Day “is the longest-running and largest fashion career event of its kind in the US…nearly 1,200 students and faculty attend annually. The program provides career opportunities and insights; hands-on access to companies offering internships and entry-level jobs; interaction with industry leaders, mentors and role models; and most importantly, merchandising and design competitions with cash awards and scholarships.” This year, TMFD sophomore merchandising student Jillian Christy received first-place recognition in the Career Day’s Trend Board-Cotton competition.  Jillian was awarded a $300 scholarship from the Texas Cotton Producers, Inc. 

TMFD alums

Textiles, Merchandising & Fashion Design alumnae Rachel Sheehy and Kristina Bruder at JCP Headquarters

In addition to Career Day, highlights of the trip included visits to the corporate headquarters of three companies representing very diverse fashion markets. The group visited the J.C. Penney headquarters in Plano, Texas, where TMFD alumnae Rachel Sheehy and Kristina Bruder, accompanied by other JCP colleagues, led them on tours of the corporate campus and facilitated a panel discussion and Q&A focused on internship and employment opportunities.

Fossil, Inc. based in Richardson, TX is, according to its website, “a global retailer specializing in the design, innovation, and marketing of fashion lifestyle and accessory products. At the heart of the Company’s vision is a commitment to fostering creativity and delivering the best in design through its two core businesses: Fossil brand; and a multi-brand watch business…With over 390 stores worldwide and a strong global e-commerce business, the brand is internationally known for its eclectic assortment of lifestyle and accessory items including watches, handbags, and clothing.” Students received an overview of the company’s brand philosophy and insights into its multi-channel retailing strategies.

at Westmoor Mfg

Westmoor Mfg. Co. President Jeffrey Hochster discusses the company's brands with tour participants

Gina at Westmoor

Westmoor Manufacturing Company's Gina Emminger explains their brands' seasonal sales tracking systems for Career Day tour participants

Westmoor Manufacturing is the parent company of such well known western wear brands as Panhandle Slim, Rock and Roll Cowgirl, 90 Proof, Rough Stock, and Rock and Roll Cowboy among others. Located in Ft. Worth, TX, Westmoor is a third generation family-run business with Nebraska roots. Hanging at the entrance to greet the TMFD group on arrival was a large “Go Big Red” poster. Its President, Jeffrey Hochster, is a UNL graduate of the College of Business Administration and remains an avid Husker fan. With his brother and son and a team of dedicated and creative designers, product developers, marketers and salespeople, Hochster has helped to build some of the most widely recognized and popular western wear brands in the world. The visit to Westmoor included a full tour of the facilities and overviews of its design and product development operations as well as its sales and merchandising strategies. It also offered an opportunity for design major Linsey Bode to interview for a summer internship with Westmoor, which was announced before the end of the group’s visit. Watch for a follow-up feature about Linsey’s internship in a future edition of Loose Threads.

Rock and Roll Cowgirl

Merchandising display for Westmoor Manufacturing Company's Rock and Roll Cowgirl brand

Textiles, Merchandising & Fashion Design