Fashion Merchandising Students Gain New 'Fashion Lab'

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Retail store replica provides unique learning experience in real-world fashion environment.

With the addition of the Lab, the school shows its continued commitment to introducing innovative ways to respond to the needs of students and help them take an active role in applying their knowledge as they prepare for their careers.

Students enrolled in the International Academy of Design & Technology Pittsburgh Fashion Merchandising Program will be gaining experience in an authentic retail environment with the unveiling of the school’s new Fashion Lab. The Lab, a replica of an actual retail store fashioned after retail clothing hotspots Limited and Express, is an innovative learning venue that allows students the chance to work in a realistic fashion merchandising setting and put business, marketing, management and sales skills into practice as they prepare for careers in the fashion merchandising field.

The Fashion Lab, purchased by the IADT Education Department, will be outfitted with mannequins and apparel and equipped with retail store fixtures and folding tables. The Lab will also feature authentic fashion posters and a variety of fashion magazines to create the perfect setting for learning about the industry. The Fashion Lab will serve as the ideal training ground for students to deepen their understanding of fashion trends, consumer behavior and marketing and sales principles, and gain valuable visual merchandising skills.

“Our students have a desire to perfect their business skills, and they are also anxious to show off their creativity,” said Fashion Merchandising Program Chair Jason Wickline. “With the opening of the Fashion Lab, our students have the opportunity to gain instant feedback from their work, and it is gratifying to see them engaging skills and honing techniques studied in the classroom.” Wickline said the response from students to the simulated retail environment has been enthusiastic. “With the addition of the Lab, the school shows its continued commitment to introducing innovative ways to respond to the needs of students and help them take an active role in applying their knowledge as they prepare for their careers.”

The Fashion Merchandising program at IADT Pittsburgh was launched in April 2005, and enrollment has grown steadily as a result of increasing interest in training for careers in the fashion industry. The program is designed to prepare students for careers in the fashion merchandising and retail industries. As part of the program, students also complete externships in fashion merchandising environments, and part of the work of those currently enrolled in the program includes the presentation of a Fashion Show, scheduled for May 2006.

The Fashion Lab is one of similar venues for hands-on learning at IADT, including such as the DNA testing labs and Firearms Simulators for the Justice Technology students.

About International Academy of Design & Technology Pittsburgh

International Academy of Design & Technology Pittsburgh offers specialized associate degrees and diploma programs in Business Administration, Visual Communications, Justice Technology and Fashion Merchandising. The mission of the International Academy of Design and Technology is to work closely with each student to identify, develop, and refine skills considered essential by employers; to provide qualified faculty who foster artistic excellence and empower students to become an accomplished professionals; to provide the latest technological innovations and industry trends to reinforce the practical applications of the curriculum; and to cultivate and foster an environment that celebrates talent, creativity and diversity. Find out more about International Academy of Design & Technology Pittsburgh specialized degree programs, financial aid for those who qualify, career services, area highlights and student life at http://www.iadtpitt.edu.

Media Contacts:

Angela Vincent

1-800-447-8324- EXT 296

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