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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Course teaches students mixture of business, style, fashion on NE

Adjunct+instructor+Susannah+Keneda+instructs+students+enrolled+in+NE%E2%80%99s+fashion+merchandising+program+on+using+a+fashion+design+board.+The+program+offers+students+an+introduction+into+the+fashion+industry%0D%0AJordan+Hess%2FThe+Collegian
Adjunct instructor Susannah Keneda instructs students enrolled in NE’s fashion merchandising program on using a fashion design board. The program offers students an introduction into the fashion industry Jordan Hess/The Collegian

By Kelli Henderson/entertainment editor

Adjunct instructor Susannah Keneda instructs students enrolled in NE’s fashion merchandising program on using a fashion design board. The program offers students an introduction into the fashion industry
Jordan Hess/The Collegian

The NE fashion merchandising program not only offers an associate degree under business, but it allows students to take a look into the local world of the clothing industry and let their passion for fashion shine.

The program is offered on NE Campus for students interested in merchandising and coordinating fashion apparel, accessories and home décor products.

Tours, hands-on projects, field trips and competitions are the main attractions for students.

“It’s fun,” adjunct instructor Susannah Keneda said. “There are a lot of projects involved, a lot of vocabulary development. But it’s a lot of applying what you know and enjoying making others feel good about themselves as well as yourself.”

This past spring, students were put into groups and told to make style stops as their final projects. Style stops are 4-foot-by-4-foot square platforms with grass and fencing. Students were given themes to create a look with an outfit and props without using words. The stops were set up around North East Mall in Hurst.

The Fashion Group International’s annual Dallas Career Day also gives students a chance to network and meet people inside the industry. The event consists of a competition students can participate in with seminars on different aspects of the fashion industry.

“This year, we had four entries in the trend board competition, which is based on natural textiles, either cotton, wool or mohair,” Keneda said. “And you do a thematic board, usually on a current trend using the natural fiber, and the objective is to win scholarship money … I know a couple of them went to [seminars] on blogging and developing a brand, there was one on fashion shows. I mean, there’s all kinds of stuff.”

The career day attracts people from around the country and includes speakers, local designers, former models and retailers who have been in the industry for 10-20 years, Keneda said.

“When we were there this last time, I was in a room with other educators, and there were some who had attended as students, and now they are attending as instructors,” she said. “It’s kind of like a full circle.”

Student Cole Morgan entered the competition with a men’s trend for the fall season with pictures from runways.

“I think my favorite thing was being around all those people because it’s not very often that you get to experience that many people in the same room who are all interested in the same thing you want to do,” he said. “And especially with fashion because it’s so different. It’s a hard industry. It’s fun to have a camaraderie that you don’t normally get to see.”

Marisa Hart joined the program not to start her own line, but to further the clothing line she already has. The student created Relentless Faith Clothing, a faith- and humanitarian-based line. She joined the program for more training and technical help.

Hart said the courses and the career day are more resourceful than she ever thought for her major.

“There’s a lot of knowledge you get in class,” she said. “And there are a lot of things we do outside of class, a lot of connections that can be made from various field trips and assignments that we’ve done.”

Certain classes are offered only certain semesters. Keneda said students usually take merchandising and image in the fall and textiles, retailing and a portfolio course in the spring.

Students in the program can then apply for a completion certificate. The program also requires basic business and math courses, she said.

Student Claudia Disabato received her certificate and encourages students to enroll.

“Take advantage of the opportunities that are given,” she said. “Dallas Career Day is optional, but that’s definitely something that you would want to do. And also, to save everything, all the projects you’ve done, because later they go into your portfolio. It all just kind of works out.”

For more information on the merchandising program, contact department chair Sally Proffitt at
sally.proffitt@tccd.edu.

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