The future of the retailing industry shines bright with talent. Over 600 college students—the up-and-coming leaders of retail—gathered together in New York City this January at the National Retail Federation’s annual trade show. Amongst the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s contingency of 31 students included several that were honored for their achievement and dedication to the future of industry by the NRF Foundation:
Next Generation Scholar
The Next Generation Scholarship is a competition for students who have demonstrated they’re prepared to be future leaders and make an impact in the retail industry. Rita Roloff is a Sophomore studying Computer Science and was recognized as a one of 25 semi-finalists for her submission on wearable technology. Rita was also invited to attend the NRF Foundation’s annual Gala for her achievement.
The Rising Stars Scholarship was created to recognize early talent and teach students about the variety of career opportunities available in the retail industry. Sophomore and Retailing and Consumer Science major Randi Armstrong earned this honor for her curiosity and goal to develop a career in retail that combines passion and giving back to the community. She was also one of six UW-Madison students who were awarded $5,000 from the YMA’s Fashion Scholarship Fund in New York City the same week.
The NRF’s Student Challenge provides the opportunity for teams of students to pitch their business ideas to retail executives. This year, the teams were asked to develop a theme for STORY, a changing concept store in New York City. UW’s team, comprised of Juniors Kendra Trost, Krystal Jacobs, Breanna Blazei (all majoring in Retailing and Consumer Behavior) and Junior Brian Lucksinger (majoring in Marketing and Business Management), placed in the Top 10 for their creative “Wanderlust” Travel theme. They received travel stipends for the NRF Student Program and were invited to an exclusive reception at the STORY retail location in NYC’s Chelsea neighborhood.
National Retail Federation Student Program
UW-Madison’s 31 students (in collaboration with the Student Retail Association and Kohl’s Center for Retailing) traveled to New York City from January 11-16, 2017. The students began the trip with visits to Trunk Club‘s NYC Clubhouse, The Doneger Group, Macy’s Herald Square offices, and Kohl’s design office. The corporate experience was followed by two busy days of the NRF’s Student Program, which included talks from fashion designer Rebecca Minkoff and leadership expert Simon Sinek, a financial literacy session, career fair, and a small-group executive mentoring experience. The students concluded their trip exploring retail’s newest technological innovations at the NRF’s annual BIG Show.
The University of Wisconsin-Madison is a University Member of the National Retail Federation.
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