FAQ

Q: How many students are in the program?
A: The department of ADHM, has three majors, in total there were 317 undergraduate and graduate students in the department fall 2012. The break down by major is as follows:
ARMD = 127
HTM=104
ID=74
MS=12

Q: What is a typical class size?
A: Generally classes in Apparel, Retail Merchandising and Design average 30 to 50 students. Laboratory classes generally have 15 to 20 students per class. Classes that are open to all students on campus (courses accepted for general education credit) have higher enrollments.

Q: What kinds of "hands on", experiential learning is available?
A: There are many opportunities for students to gain hands-on experiences while earning a degree in ADHM. Students earning a retail merchandisign degree are required to complete an internship as part of their degree. In addition, the student organization, the Fashion, Apparel, and Business Organization (FABO) provides many opportunities to "learn by doing". One example is the spring fashion show produced by the FABO group. The fashion show (check out the on-line video on this web page, is one of the highlights of the university wide Spring Blast week of events.

Q: Are there online courses available?
A: Yes, we offer several classes on-line in an attempt to accommodate student needs. The department has even developed a three-year retail merchandising B.S. degree so that if students need or want to complete a four year degree in three it is possible. This is done with careful advising and a combinaton of sit down and on-line classes taken throughout the year. It should be noted that all required courses are offered at least once a year as a sit down, on campus class.

Q: Do I need any special equipment or computer hardware or software for this program?
A: No special equipment is needed for the program at this time.

Q: How is the Fashion Institute of Technology (F.I.T.) in New York affiliated with the ARMD program? What might that look like if I pursue that? What is necessary to be considered?
A: The Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT), a premier fashion institution in NYC offers a Visiting Student Program to students from other universities around the country and world. The ARMD program at NDSU is one such school allowed to offer this option to our students. There are five majors available to students participating in the FIT Visiting Student Program. The most popular with our students is the fashion design and retail merchandising programs.

Professional enrichment is possible through departmental affiliation with the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) in New York City, or various Study Abroad programs. NDSU students who attend these institutions for a semester or a year gain valuable experience in fashion or retail merchandising. students hsould prepare to do this experience during their junior and/or senior year. A student in good standing at NDSU can apply for admission to the one-year Visiting Student Program at FIT, which provides students with an Associate's Degree from FIT and a Bachelor of Science from NDSU. It is important to work closely with your Academic Advisor to ensure that you meet the graduation requirements of both universities.

FIT accepts the courseowrk from the home school as meeting FIT requirements for their associate degree and NDSU accepts courses taken during the year long program at FIT to complete the required minor in ADHM and for the professional electives needed for a degree from NDSU. Credits are transferred back to NDSU from FIT. Student sinterested in the fashion design program need a strong art background as a portfolio review is part of teh admissions process. An overall minimum GPA is also required.

Q: How are the options different? When do I need to decide which option I want to pursue? What are the career paths for each option? Can I opt for a Business minor with the Apparel Studies option? What other minors do selecting this option pursue?
A: The option in retail merchandising prepared students for a retail merchandising business career. The apparel studies option prepares students for careers in other areas of the apparel and textiles industry, other than retail merchandising. This option focuses on development, design, and marketing of materials and products within the apparel and textile market place, rather than to the ultimate consumer. Additionally, students may select a minor to enhance their learning as it specially relates to a field of interest such as theater design, visual merchandising, and museum curator work.

Yes, it is possible to earn a minor in business with program; it is best if a double minor is considered, as this allows for the combination of a specific area of interest other than retail merchandising w/ business background.

Q: Is an internship required?
A: An internship / field experience is required for the Retail Merchandising focus. It is an option for Apparel Studies students, but most choose to do the experiece.

Q: Where do students go for internships? Are they paid?
A: Students complete their internships in a variety of locations - may stay in the Fargo/Moohead area, some go to Minneapolis, Chicago, New York City, or Los Angeles. Retail stores are often the internship sites, however, students have opportunities at corporate offices such as Kohls, Vanity and Target, and at showrooms in NY or LA. Most internships are paid, but they tend to be unpaid in the fashion centers such as New York and LA.

Q: Are we placed into an internship or must we find our own?
A: Students find their own internship site, but opportunities are made available through faculty contacts.

Q: What kinds of careers does this major prepare me for?
A: This major prepares you for a variety of careers in the apparel and interior merchandising industries. Possible career paths include store manager, merchandise analyst, visual merchandise manager, product developer, buyer, business analyst, designer, showroom sales representative, and a marketing manager.

Q: What are the placement rates for graduates of the program? Starting salaries?
A: A typical starting salary range is $25,000 - $48,000. Placement rates are nearly 100% when graduates are flexible about location.

Q: Is this the best path of study to become a buyer?
A: The retail merchandising option is the very best degree for a career as a retail buyer.

Q: What career networking opportunities might be available during my four years of study?
A: Networking opportunities are provided to students in NDSU' ARMD program through 1) fashion industry professionals coming into classrooms to speak; 2) summer internships for college credit in professional work envirionments; 3) study tours focusing on the fashion industry in major cities in teh USA and internationally; 4) activities and programs sponsored by the ARMD student group, the Fashion Apparel and Business Organization (FABO).

Q: Is the retail option realistic if I know I want to stay in rural ND?
A: This depends on what the student wants to pursue as a career in a rural area. If the student wants to open his/her own retial or apparel related business, yes, this iwll provide a great background for this employment.

Q: Do I have to know how to sew to be successful in this option?
A: No, one does not need to know how to sew to be in this major. Hoever, if a student wants to participate in the FIT fashion design program, it is assumed students have clothing construction skills.

Q: What student organizations are associated with this major? How do I get involved?
A: The Fashion Apparel and Business Organization (FABO) brings in speakers and organizes field trips and other activities to provide interaction with professionals. Other organizations / the college and University provides further opportunities for leadership development and contact with professionals.