Visual Merchandising Degree Programs in Charleston, SC

Oct 08, 2018

There are two schools within 115 miles of Charleston, SC, that have visual merchandising degree programs. Read an overview of these schools' programs, requirements and admission info and find out which school is the right one for you.

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Charleston, SC, Area Schools with Visual Merchandising Programs

The immediate Charleston, SC, area does not have any schools that offer programs in visual merchandising. However, there is one art and design college and one university within a 115-mile radius that offer programs in fashion merchandising or fashion marketing and management. Keep reading for more details about these programs, and check out the comparison table in the next section for some key school facts.

  • The University of South Carolina's Department of Retailing offers career-oriented programs taught by award-winning faculty members. Located in Columbia, SC, 103 miles from Charleston, the school offers a bachelor's degree program in retailing with a concentration in fashion merchandising. Graduate coursework in merchandising can be found through the school's master's degree program in retailing.
  • The Savannah College of Art and Design in Savannah, Georgia, located 94 miles from Charleston, offers a minor in fashion marketing and management and a Bachelor of Fine Arts, both of which include coursework in merchandising.

Comparison of Schools

Use this table to compare school sizes, in-state and out-of-state tuition, retention rates and graduation statistics at the University of South Carolina and the Savannah College of Art and Design.

University of South Carolina Savannah College of Art and Design
School Type 4-year; public 4-year; private, not-for-profit
Total Enrollment (2017) 34,731* 13,163*
Campus Setting Midsize city Midsize city
Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2017-2018) $11,862 in-state; $31,962 out-of-state* $36,410*
% of First-Year Students Receiving Some Form of Financial Aid (2016-2017) 91%* 98%*
Acceptance Rate (2017) 72%* 93%*
Retention Rate (2016-2017) 88% of full-time students; 80% of part-time students* 83% of full-time students; 69% of part-time students*
Graduation Rate (students who began in 2011) 75% (9% transfer-out rate)* 65%*

Source: *NCES College Navigator

University of South Carolina

The University of South Carolina's Department of Retailing offers one of the nation's largest retailing programs, with specializations in fashion merchandising and retail management. Students can choose from a bachelor's degree program or a professional master's degree program; an accelerated joint-degree program is an additional option. The department offers four separate programs of study. Study abroad opportunities are also available.

Bachelor of Science in Retailing - Specialization in Fashion Merchandising

Students in this program develop communication and decision-making skills through coursework, seminars and internships. Courses include fashion merchandising and trends, business communications, textiles, store design and marketing. The program is designed to give students a solid foundation of knowledge in business and fashion while emphasizing a core liberal arts study.

Master of Retailing

This program is designed for individuals pursuing retail management positions at the corporate level, as well as those interested in keeping up with the latest advances in the retail industry. The program is also appropriate for students who wish to advance to further graduate study. International retailing and retail technology skills are featured areas of study.

Participants complete research projects and learn to utilize their findings in real-world business situations. Topics of study include merchandising management strategies, statistics for applied management, international retailing and applied research hospitality, retail and sport management. Students attend retail seminars, complete a merchandising field study and write a thesis.

Savannah College of Art and Design

Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), founded in 1978, does not offer a program specific to visual merchandising, but its fashion marketing and management programs include relevant coursework. The programs aim to prepare students for professional careers in an international business market.

Minor in Fashion Marketing and Management

Students who minor in this field must complete 25 hours of coursework. A class in planning and controlling the fashion merchandising process is required, along with courses in fashion accessory design, retail buying and digital presentation techniques.

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Fashion Marketing and Management

This program covers various aspects of the fashion industry, including product development, buying, fashion aesthetics and visual communication. Students must complete a designated number of general education, core curriculum and major courses. Fashion marketing management courses address fashion history, trend forecasting, retail management, design and international retail buying. There are two required merchandising courses that cover topics like planning and contemporary issues. Students participate in simulated retail buying class that covers merchandising principles and put together a fashion portfolio.

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