Retailing and Consumer Sciences

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You want to make a difference on a big scale, and we're here to support your aspirations. The $25-trillion global retail industry needs people like you to expertly study consumer behavior and manage retail operations within this dynamic, in-demand field. Our interdisciplinary curriculum provides you with a solid foundation of management, buying, product development, human resources and visual merchandising - to name a few. Our expert faculty will guide you through interpretation of leading research to give you the expertise and confidence to make data-driven decisions that lead to rewarding results. Our partnerships with industry leaders provide you with access to practical experience that empowers you to achieve success after graduation.

Retailing and Consumer Sciences (RCSC) is an Academic Program of the John and Doris Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences. Our mission is to provide world-class education on the business of retailing by integrating excellent instruction with cutting-edge research on consumer behavior and retail management. We aspire to be the program of choice globally among the few institutions that offer both undergraduate and graduate degrees focused exclusively on the study of consumers and the business of retailing.

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Retailing Student

Norton School of Family & Consumer Sciences

The John and Doris Norton School of Family & Consumer Sciences is located within the College of Agriculture & Life Sciences (CALS). All of the Norton School faculty and staff are deeply committed to your success and creating a supportive environment for students to thrive. While you are here, you will make lifelong connections and take part in projects that make a difference on a big scale. You will have the opportunity to apply for scholarships that are only available to RCSC students, and the Terry J. Lundgren Center for Retailing will help you land internships, build your resume, and prepare to launch a successful career.

100% Engagement

For you, pursuing a career in retailing is the fulfillment of an ambition that blends both the creative and analytical. Through your engagement in the retailing and consumer science curriculum and involvement in case competitions, student clubs, study tours, and our retail innovation lab, you will develop a strong set of skills to see this ambition come to life. You will prepare for success after graduation and earn an engaged learning notation on your transcript through the UA's 100% Engagement initiative. These internships, classes, and other learning opportunities will help you figure out what you want to do and how to tell future employers about your experience.

Career Opportunities

Retail Manager: Oversee store operations including recruiting, developing and managing store personnel. Other key tasks include ensuring proper execution of store-based product merchandising and promotional strategies and maintaining strong customer service levels.

Retail Buyer: Develop the most profitable product assortment based on a thorough understanding of consumer demands, space and dollar constraints, and vendor capabilities and offers. Oversee development of product pricing, promotion and merchandising strategies executed across all sales channels.

Product Planning/Allocations Manager: Work closely with retail buyers, store managers and supply chain personnel in assuring the proper volume and timing of product purchases and deliveries to satisfy customer demand. Thoroughly analyze inventory levels by store and product to help gauge going-forward demand.

Product Developer: Oversee the development of private and exclusive labels for retailers that set them apart in the very competitive consumer market. Work closely with retail buyers, supply chain managers and vendors from across the world to develop and source unique offerings across a wide range of product categories.

Supply Chain/Logistics Managers: Work with external partners including product vendors and third-party logistics companies to ensure efficient flow of product from manufacturer to store and fulfillment centers. Ensure efficient and effective logistics operations within distribution and fulfillment centers and timely physical allocation of product as driven by planning and allocation objectives

Human Resources Manager: Oversee a company’s human resources functions, including employment and staffing, performance evaluation, compensation and benefits, safety and employee relations.

Visual Merchandising Associates: Execute visual merchandising and creative direction and make appropriate changes based on store layout and product ownership. Collaborate with product buyers on all rollout expectations and assist with maintaining store forms, windows and store standards.

Retail Event Planners: Identify retail and outside event venues for product displays. Coordinate and assist with setup and tear down of displays. Recruit, hire, train and motivate professionals to market and staff the event.

Education and Industry Advocates: Offer training, education and support of retail in a variety of industries, including as a governmental lobbyist for retail operations.

Entrepreneur: Create new business models and product and service innovations that break into the very dynamic and changing retailing industry.

Public Relations/Advertising Managers: Enhance the reach and reputation of retailers, design houses, and other consumer goods businesses through strategic marketing and communications efforts.

Advanced Degree Candidates: Deepen your understanding and expand your career options through graduate business or design school.

Student and Terry J. Lundgren

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The University of Arizona