Home Furnishings Merchandising students participate in ART Student Day at the Dallas Market Center
March 06, 2012

The Student Mentoring Day began with a welcome from DMC President and CEO Bill Winsor, who challenged the students to differentiate themselves, thus presenting one of the themes of the day. Following Mr. Winsor's speech, the students enjoyed a panel presentation from various industry professionals, which included manufacturers, retailers, sales representatives, and merchandisers/designers. Panel members included  Colleen Visage (Director of Product Design, Swarovski Lighting Business), Rick Janecek (Creative Director, Global Views), Bill Fortson and John Clements (Owners, BJ's Home Accents), Cody Hutcheson (Principal/Key Accounts Sales Representative, CODARUS), Cole Daugherty (Vice President of Marketing Communications, Dallas Market Center), and Paul Thompson (Owner, Paul Thompson Signature).  Each panel member recounted their career paths, discussed the value of a variety of work experiences, and explained their passion for their work. It was from the panel presentation that students learned the second theme of the day...passion. The panel encouraged the students to have passion for their career and future.

After the completion of the panel presentation, students enjoyed guided tours of the following showrooms:  Holtkoetter, Hinkley, Swarovski, Troy/CSL, Homestyle, IMAX, Global Views, CODARUS, and Groovystuff University Hall of Innovation. From the guided tours, students learned the importance of merchandising products appropriately, that it is vital to understand your target market and the end-user, and the value of providing buyers with ample and attractive product lines. The final experience of the day entailed a short presentation on Branding Basics from Randal Weeks, Owner of Aidan Gray. Mr. Weeks shared his entrepreneurship experience, as well as his experiences while branding his company.

For more information about the Home Furnishings Merchandising degree in the Department of Merchandising and Digital Retailing, contact Dr. Lynn Brandon, Associate Professor and Program Coordinator at Lynn.Brandon@unt.edu , or to learn about internships, contact Dee Wilson, the Career Development Coordinator. Dee.Wilson@unt.edu

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