Marketing and Merchandising students at The University of Southern Mississippi enjoyed some hands-on retail experience during the annual “Passion for Fashion” event held April 7-11 on the Hattiesburg campus.
“Passion for Fashion” is a pop-up consignment store in which junior-level students have the opportunity to execute and manage merchandising sales and promotion as part of their class project. The students were able to execute every part of the store including designing the promotional plan, store layout, providing personal styling services for customers, and everything in-between.
The project gave students a chance to gain real experience in promotion, merchandising, store planning, logistics, accounting, and customer service while enhancing critical learning and teamwork skills.
“Passion for Fashion gave me the opportunity to build essential management skills that I can enter the work force with,” said Anna Raven Smith, president of the Fashion Merchandising Organization at Southern Miss.
Customers were given a wide selection of clothing and accessories to choose from including clothing for juniors, misses, women’s, petite sizes, men’s, and children’s apparel. Apparel such as casual wear, career wear, outerwear, formalwear/cocktail, shoes, belts, handbags, and jewelry was available, as well as clothing for all seasons.
“This was my first year going to ‘Passion for Fashion’ and I was pleasantly surprised at how many great, fashionable clothes were there. I cannot wait to go back next year,” said Southern Miss junior Haley Beasley, a pre-theater major.
Profits from the sales went to the Fashion Merchandising program for scholarships, grants, and prize money for Fashion Merchandising students. Since “Passion for Fashion” started in 2007, approximately 700 students have worked as managers and staff to run the store and more than 70 students have earned financial assistance from the proceeds.
To learn more about “Passion for Fashion,” contact Dr. Brigitte Burgess at 601-266-6392. Learn about the Fashion Merchandising Program at Southern Miss at www.usm.edu/undergraduate/fashion-merchandising-and-apparel-studies-bs