Fashion Management Degree Program Options

Oct 13, 2019

Students interested in fashion management can enroll in a variety of degree programs. These options include undergraduate degree programs in fashion merchandising and management and graduate degree programs in fashion management and entrepreneurship.

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Essential Information

Students can learn to apply business concepts to the world of fashion by studying fashion merchandising and management or fashion management and entrepreneurship. Associate's and bachelor's degree programs give students a fundamental knowledge of business principles in general, along with several courses that concern the fashion industry. In a master's degree program, students learn about advanced topics such as global management, retail merchandising and marketing.

Students who want to enroll in a fashion merchandising undergraduate program can enroll directly out of high school with a diploma or GED. Admission to an MBA program in fashion management requires a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution, not necessarily in fashion management. Other admission requirements include acceptable GMAT scores, a high undergraduate GPA, a personal statement essay and professional references.

Associate of Applied Science in Fashion Merchandising and Management

This 2-year degree program combines a liberal arts education with business and fashion management courses, preparing students for the financial, creative and managerial aspects of the fashion industry. Students study business practices, fashion marketing techniques and topical issues in merchandising, including product development and purchasing. Students complete coursework in a traditional classroom setting and participate in internship experiences in apparel and textile or fashion design companies. Common courses in this degree program may include:

  • Consumer behavior
  • Principles of fashion merchandising
  • International marketing
  • Fashion management principles
  • Intro to fashion marketing

Bachelor of Science in Fashion Merchandising and Management

Coursework in the major teaches students the fundamentals of business management along with topics specific to the business of the fashion industry. Students learn to market fashion materials like clothing and accessories and effectively manage a retail business. This program includes informational technology courses that teach students how computers aid in product development, as well as merchandising courses on how to purchase apparel and other materials. Toward the end of this program, students complete an internship. Common courses in this bachelor's degree program include:

  • Marketing
  • Licensing
  • Business writing
  • Merchandising
  • Textiles and fashion materials

MBA in Fashion Management and Entrepreneurship

Students in this degree program learn global management strategies, financial planning and analysis, marketing and sales. Coursework includes the study of quantitative research methods, economics, management styles and supply chain management. Fashion management courses teach students the fundamentals of the fashion industry, including merchandising, product development and retail management. This MBA program also requires students to complete internships in the fashion industry, as well as a capstone project at the end of the program. Common courses in this degree program include:

  • Business law
  • Buyer behavior
  • Branding
  • Finance principles
  • Macroeconomics

Popular Career Options

Graduates who hold a bachelor's degree in fashion merchandising and management may go on to entry-level positions in many areas of the fashion industry. Those who hold an MBA in Fashion Management and Entrepreneurship can go on to have a variety of creative and business career options in the fashion industry. Gradates may find careers in the retail, product development, marketing and purchasing segments of the fashion industry. Popular career options for graduates include:

  • Designer
  • Advertiser
  • Retail manager
  • Project manager
  • Fashion merchandiser
  • Marketing coordinator

Career Outlook and Salary Info

Individuals who earn an associate's degree may start out as retail sales workers. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment in this field is expected to decrease 2%, from 2018 to 2028, which is roughly as fast as the average for all careers. The BLS reports that retail salespersons made a median wage of $24,200 per year as of 2018.

Continuing Education Information

Graduates who earn an associate's degree in this area of study can enroll in a bachelor's degree program in fashion merchandising and management. This degree program expands on the associate's degree program and provides further study in business and fashion management. Students who earn a bachelor's degree may have greater earning and advancement potential than those who hold associate's degrees. Bachelor's degree holders can enroll in a graduate degree program in fashion management. A Master of Business Administration (MBA) program prepares students for greater leadership roles in the fashion industry, including managers and entrepreneurs.

Undergraduate and graduate degree programs in the field of fashion management provide students with a strong foundation of knowledge that they can use to hold leadership and entrepreneurship positions within the fashion industry.

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