The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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New ways to improve the fashion world

Photo by Photo by Brandon Holmes

Senior supply chain management major, Annika Neldeberg, won a scholarship from the YMA Fashion Scholarship Fund.

Putting their education and creativity to work, students from Mays Business School designed innovative experiences for fashion retailers in a nationwide scholarship competition.
During the fall of 2017, 12 Texas A&M business students participated in the national YMA Fashion Scholarship Fund. YMA is an educational non-profit whose purpose is to provide career opportunities and financial support to students interested in a career in fashion. Out of the 12 Aggies that participated, eight went on to win $5,000 scholarships for their work.
In order for A&M students to participate, they must spend a semester in the Advanced Retail Case Study course taught by executive professor Cheryl Bridges. During this time, students performed primary and secondary research to support their case study.
“Students say doing this case study, whether they win the scholarship or not, prepares them for the real world of business,” Bridges said. “Major companies in retailing, advertising, design and fashion support the organization and recognize the work that goes into completing the case studies.”
A&M has been participating in the FSF case study competition for seven years. Participants compete against other students from major business and fashion design universities, including Harvard University and Parsons School of Design.
“It’s really neat that us business students get to come represent, but also being from the South [because] it’s not typical up there. It’s a lot of East Coast schools,” marketing junior Payton Cupstid said.
Students who advance in the competition attend an awards ceremony in New York City, where they are able to network with industry professionals. Bridges said even if a student does not win a scholarship, they still have impressive work to include in their portfolio.
“It’s important that students are involved with educational opportunities such as FSF, not only because of the discipline to complete the project, but also because this particular one is done individually,” Bridges said.
The 2017 prompt required students to pick a retailer and come up with a digital in-store experience. Cupstid was the only participant in the competition to receive a $15,000 scholarship for a perfect score on her work.
“I chose Nordstrom and my concept was virtually transforming the fitting room,” Cupstid said. “The idea was that you would have a panel in the fitting room and digitally select where you want to be.”
Annika Neldeberg, supply chain management senior, designed a concept called “climate adventures” for Recreational Equipment Inc. in which customers can virtually test out their clothes in the elements. She said she enjoyed the practical experience that came with the project.
“We had to do the financials, just like any other business, just to show that it was viable and that it would be a good investment,” Neldeberg said.
The students spent hours researching and revising their work. Cupstid said the biggest takeaway from participating in FSF was learning firsthand that success is not a straight line.
“I think being successful, especially in a creative environment, you can’t have this one-minded thought,” Cupstid said. “There’s so much that you can do to revise and make it better.”
By having a creative retail idea and combining it with her passion for sports, Neldeberg produced a winning case study, which she said will speak volumes when applying for jobs.
“It’s something that is so applicable to business and that’s something I like,” Neldeberg said. “For it all to come together, because all of the work from our case studies and Mrs. Bridges, it was amazing to have that satisfaction and belief that we made it.”

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  • Junior marketing major, Payton Cupstid won a scholarship from the YMA Fashion Scholarship Fund. 

    Photo by Photo by Brandon Holmes

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