Retail Studies

Director: Kirthi Kalyanam

Retailing is a dynamic and fast-paced industry and encompasses many functional areas. It demands a blend of analytical and creative skills. The minor in retail studies offered by the Retail Management Institute is an in-depth immersion experience that prepares students for a diverse set of leadership roles including e-commerce, buying, merchandising, planning and allocation, digital marketing, and supply chain management. The program is open to all University undergraduates. Students entering the retail studies minor continue to major in their field of interest and receive their bachelor's degree in that field.

Business majors get an opportunity to discover an exciting industry in which to build their passions. For many business majors, broad business theories develop deeper meaning as they are applied specifically and in an integrative manner to the retail industry. Innovations in Internet retailing and e-commerce provide great opportunities for MIS majors. Retailing is at the forefront of trends in digital and mobile marketing, and social media. This provides a fertile ground for arts and science students to leverage their unique background.

One of the most valuable and unique aspects of the retail studies minor is participation in an internship during the summer after the junior year. This immersion experience gives students insight into the retail industry and potential careers that are available. Students acquire experience through a full-time, 10-week paid or non-paid internship at internationally recognized retailers such as Cost Plus World Market, Gap Inc., Ross, Williams-Sonoma, Levi Strauss & Co., and Nordstrom. A wide variety of internships meet diverse student interests and needs.

The minor is composed of a set of core courses. Students can select from the following options: (1) Multi-channel, (2) Internet Retailing and Digital Marketing, or (3) Web Engineering, based on the interests of the individual student. The core courses include a foundational retailing class in the spring quarter of their junior year and a two-quarter advanced retail seminar in the fall and winter quarters of their senior year. The core classes cover topics such as digital marketing, branding, product development, category management, negotiation, social media business analytics, supply chain management, e-commerce, and pricing and promotion analysis.

Nonbusiness majors are encouraged to apply for admission to the program during their first or second year to allow time to integrate their course of study in retailing with the requirements in their major field. Business students who have completed the lower- division requirements can enter the program no later than November of their junior year. Students are admitted into the minor at the discretion of the Director based on multiple criteria including a minimum GPA of 3.0, proven analytical skills, and the ability to blend analytical and creative thinking.

Requirements for the Minor

Students must complete the following requirements for a minor in retail studies:

  • COMM 20 or MGMT 171
  • COMM 12 or OMIS 34, or SOCI 49/149
  • ECON 1
  • OMIS 40 or COMM 110 or PSYC 40, or MATH 8/123 or AMTH 108
  • MKTG 181
  • MKTG 165 (ACTG 11 and MKTG 181 or 181S are prerequisites to this class)
  • Summer internship: BUSN 198R
  • MKTG 168 and 169

Students must select one of the following three options:

Multi-channel Option

  • OMIS 15 (this OMIS requirement cannot be waived)
  • MGMT 160

Internet Retailing and Digital Marketing Option

  • ARTS 74 or 174
  • ARTS 75 or 175
  • MKTG 175 or ARTS 177 or OMIS 111, or OMIS 113

Web Engineering Option

  • COEN 161
  • COEN 163
  • COEN 162

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