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Indiana University Bloomington

Department of Apparel Merchandising and Interior Design College of Arts and Sciences

News & Events

Retail Forum 2011 was a great success!

Retail Forum 2011The Retail & Design Forum is an all-day event held every year and is sponsored by the Apparel Merchandising & Interior Design Department, IUSA, and the student-run Retail Studies Organization.  Each year, top executives from major companies from all areas of the apparel industry come to Indiana University’s campus to speak to students about their experiences in the retail field. 

This year, the forum was pleased to welcomed Michael Gilbert, Senior Vice President of Product Development from Kohl’s; Kristin Scott, Senior Vice President GMM of Merchandising from Victoria’s Secret; Harris Mustafa, Executive Vice President of Supply Chain and Planning and Allocation from DSW; Rob High, Senior Vice President of Global R’ Brands from Toys R’ Us; and Diane Combes, Divisional Merchandise Manager of Kids from the Gap.  Each speaker offered a unique perspective regarding their different positions as well as discussing their career path and how their journey led them to their current job title.  Students were able to learn about the responsibilities and roles of each position, different projects the company is currently working on, as well as some of the everyday challenges these executives face and how they overcome these challenges. 

These top executives also offered helpful advice to students about what they can do to successfully stand out from other students to college recruiters and how they should go about in landing an internship or first job.  They offered extremely valuable advice about the many fields and opportunities in retail that students have the option to explore.  The Retail & Design Forum was a great success this year and students were able to take away exclusive advice from successful executives as well as the chance to network one on one with the speakers.