Fashion Design & Merchandising
This program is designed to provide students with an understanding of fashion and textile industries, consumer behavior, product development, business principles, and technology applications.
Students concentrate in one of two areas
Design and Product Development
Design and Product Development emphasizes the total design and production process from inception to finished product and its ultimate sale to the consumer. Specialized labs and industry software provide students with extensive hands-on experience in the latest design, product development, and fashion retailing technology applications.
Merchandising combines an overview of the fashion industry, consumer behavior, product development, planning, buying business operations and entrepreneurship.
The Fashion Design and Merchandising major offers an accelerated program to earn both a bachelor's and master's degree in a shorter length of time. Students in the Accelerated Program take graduate-level courses and earn both undergraduate credit and graduate credit simultaneously. Students need to consult with a potential graduate advisor to ensure graduate credit could be applied to a program of study for the graduate degree. Applications to these programs are submitted in the junior year (i.e., after completion of 60 or more hours of graded undergraduate courses).
- Apparel Manufacturer
- Area Sales Manager
- E-Commerce Business Owner
- Extension Specialist or Agent
- Fashion Consultant / Stylist
- Fashion, Costume, Accessory, or Technical Designer
- Fashion Forecaster
- Fashion Journalist
- Manufacturer's Representative
- Merchandise Manager
- Product Developer
- Professor, Instructor, or Teacher
- Retail Buyer / Analyst
- Store Manager or Business Owner
- Textile Scientist
- Visual Merchandiser / In-Store Display
Conferences and Collections
Generations X, Y, and Z share an overwhelming belief that all of us need to work together to change our world, and they are voting with their purchases. From fiber sourcing to end product, stakeholders and consumers alike are demanding transparency in measuring and reducing the environmental and social impact of textile products. View presentations from the 2020 Sustainability Conference.
Exhibits and Collections
Students are required to complete professional internships in firms across the country and internationally to prepare students for high quality apparel-related positions. Visit our internship page for more information.
The Retail Certificate offered by the Fashion Design and Merchandising (FDM) program will complement existing B.S. degree tracks by adding an opportunity to students from any program to complete a formal and coherent grouping of courses with a retail focus. The goal of the Retail Certificate is to introduce current students to the dynamics of the retail industry and provide them some tools and training to be successful in a rapidly growing industry. Visit our Retail Certificate page for more information.
Students may apply for university, college and departmental scholarships through one application. You can find the scholarship application once you login to myState. Under the banner tab, select Financial Aid and Scholarships. The application is listed as Submit/Revise General Scholarship Application.
Each summer FDM faculty lead intensive study abroad tours to New York, London, Paris, Milan, Florence, Rome, and/or Venice. These unique learning opportunities allow students to experience different cultures while building their personal global network with fashion industry professionals. See more of their travels on Instagram. To find out more, visit the MSU International Institute.
Students may transfer to Mississippi State University from regionally accredited community, junior or senior colleges for any period of enrollment, provided they have earned a 2.0 GPA (as computed by Mississippi State University) on all college courses attempted as well as earned a 2.0 GPA on the 30-hours of core courses. Transfer students should look at the transfer course equivalent guide to determine which courses will transfer.
Graduation Rates and Retention
|Enroll Year||New Enrollees||Grads||Non-Grads||6-year Grad Rate|
Freshmen to Sophomore Retention and Attrition in FDM
|Year||New Freshmen||Still in Major||Retention Rate||Dropped Out||Attrition Rate||In School, Not in Major||Transfer Rate||New in Major||Net Enrollment||Percent Change|
Undergraduate Graduating Exit Survey Results
|Employment, full-time paid||75||70.8||80||75||100||70||61.7||66.7||69.6||82.5||82.9||80||86.5|
|Employment, part-time paid||3.1||4.2||5||0||0||8.3||10||8.3||8.7||1.6||0||0||0|
|Grad or Professional School, full-time||15.6||16.7||10||16.7||0||16.7||19.3||21.7||15.2||4.8||5.7||17.1||2.7|
|Grad or Professional School, part-time||3.1||4.2||0||0||0||0||1.7||3.3||2.2||3.2||2.9||0||5.4|
|Additional undergraduate coursework||0||0||0||8.3||0||3.3||3.3||0||2.2||0||0||0||2.7|
|Volunteer activity (e.g., Peace Corps)||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Starting or raising a family||0||0||0||0||0||0||3.3||0||0||0||2.9||0||0|
|Other, please specify||3.1||4.2||5||0||0||1.7||1.7||0||2.2||7.9||5.7||2.9||2.7|