Minnesota only has three colleges and universities awarding degrees in fashion merchandising or related areas. However, individuals can find programs at varying levels at these schools - from undergraduate to doctoral degrees. Some schools offer fashion merchandising degree programs online. At the graduate level, fashion merchandising classes may be offered as an area of emphasis through a design degree program. Additionally, fashion merchandising may be studied as a minor or major.
Many fashion merchandising programs allow for studies abroad or participation in field trips to attend fashion events. Admission may be competitive, so candidates may need to submit an essay to define their career interests. Brief summaries of the schools' programs are listed below, as well as a chart to quickly compare schools.
Alexandria Technical and Community College
Students in Alexandria can learn about fashion merchandising in the associate program at this school. The Associate in Applied Science requires 72 credits, including an internship, for completion. Courses for the program include fashion retailing, sales tactics, management and marketing.
St. Catherine University
Students in Saint Paul can earn a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science in Fashion Merchandising at St. Catherine University. Some of the required major courses include fashion history, retailing, clothing analysis and visual merchandising. Fashion-merchandising majors must also complete a minor in business administration. First-year students may qualify for program-specific scholarships. Additionally, students may be able to study abroad in cities like Boston, New York City, London, Paris and Florence.
Those who already hold a bachelor's degree may enroll in the post-bachelor's certificate program in fashion merchandising. At least half of the major requirements must be completed, and students are also urged to complete a minor in business.
University of Minnesota - Twin Cities
This Minneapolis-based university offers undergraduate and graduate programs relevant to the fashion-merchandising field. To earn a minor in retail merchandising, students take 15-17 credits of retail merchandising classes. Several of the courses are applicable to the fashion field, such as the international fashion market and product buying.
Admission into the bachelor's program in retail merchandising is limited and competitive. Students specifically can prepare for a fashion-merchandising career by choosing an apparel emphasis. Emphasis courses may cover fabric analysis, fashion history, fashion trends and the international fashion industry. Some of the major courses include visual merchandising, retail purchasing and promotion. While earning their degrees, students are required to complete an internship, and they may be able to participate in study abroad opportunities.
At the graduate level, students can earn a Master of Science, Master of Arts or Doctor of Philosophy in Design and concentrate in apparel studies. A further concentration in retail merchandising and consumer studies is available to students in these programs. Master's students complete research and concentration-related classes. Additionally, they can choose to complete either a thesis or project. Doctoral students complete various research classes and concentration-related courses like retail consumer behavior. A doctoral thesis is also required.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type & Setting||Fashion Merchandising Degree Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition and Fees (2018-2019)*|
|Alexandria Technical and Community College||2-year; public; rural||Associate in Applied Science in Fashion Management||$5,416|
|St. Catherine University||University; private not-for-profit; large city|| Bachelor of Arts in Fashion Merchandising,
Bachelor of Science in Fashion Merchandising,
Second Major Certificate in Fashion Merchandising
|University of Minnesota - Twin Cities||University; public; large city|| Minor in retail merchandising,
Bachelor of Science in Retail Merchandising,
Master of Arts in Design - Design, Housing & Apparel,
Master of Science in Design - Design, Housing & Apparel,
Doctor of Philosophy in Design - Apparel Track: Retail & Consumer Studies
|$14,760 in-state, $30,438 out-of-state|
Source: *NCES College Navigator