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    (SAN BERNARDINO, Calif.)– Have you ever dreamed of marketing your own line of clothes? Do you want to decide what hot fashion looks will show up in Nordstrom’s, Macy’s and other top fashion retailers?

    The Art Institute of California-Inland Empire (www.artinstitutes.edu/inlandempire) is offering a new degree program in Fashion and Retail Management that will allow students to learn the inner workings of the fashion business. With the Art Institute of California – Inland Empire’s year-round schedule, students could obtain this bachelor’s degree in three years.

    “We finally have a program right in our back yard,” said Phyllis Clark, who has worked in fashion merchandising for more than 20 years and serves as a member of the new major’s program advisory committee. “Students in the Inland Empire will have a very exciting opportunity to study fashion merchandising and retailing as a career.”

    The Inland Empire needs a qualified labor force in the fashion industry, Clark said, because there are a growing number of large, upscale retail centers in the two-county area. A few of these are Victoria Gardens and the Ontario Mills Outlet Mall in the west San Bernardino Valley, the Galleria at Tyler and Riverside Plaza in Riverside and the Cabazon Outlet Mall in Cabazon and El Paseo in Palm Desert.

    Now that the fashion and retail management program has begun, Clark said, the Art Institute also plans to expose others to the world of fashion by bringing in speakers and staging fashion shows.

    “They have an important and necessary role in the fashion landscape of the Inland Empire,” she said.

    “Anyone who would love to have a job in fashion or retail management should study in this new major at the Art Institute of California – Inland Empire,” said Jerry Foust, Dean of Academic Affairs. “We focus on entry level careers, and our new degree program will give students the skills necessary to enter the world of fashion and retail management.”

    The program provides a broad-based general education, then offers specialized courses in marketing, fashion design and retail management. Topics students will learn include retail marketing, designing fashion portfolios, staging fashion shows and predicting fashion trends, to name a few.

    As with all of the Art Institute of California-Inland Empire degree programs, the fashion and retail management courses will be taught by instructors who have worked in the field. One of the program’s instructors is Robert Delgadillo, who designs advertisements for the chic and upscale Beverly Hills clothing boutique, Kitson. Delgadillo is also an instructor in the Art Institute of California – Inland Empire’s graphic arts department.

    You can start classes before summer at the Art Institute. The next sessions begin May 8. For more information, or for a tour of the campus, call (909) 915-2100.

    The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire offers Bachelor of Science degrees in Game Art & Design, Culinary Management, Graphic Design, Web Design & Interactive Media, Interior Design, Fashion and Retail Management and Media Arts & Animation. There are also Associate of Science degrees in Graphic Design and Culinary Arts. Each program is offered on a year-round basis, allowing students to work uninterrupted toward their degrees.

    The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire is one of the Art Institutes (artinstitutes.edu) with 40 educational institutions throughout North America, providing an important source of design, media arts, fashion and culinary professionals.

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