New Fashion Design Curriculum Slated for Genesee Community College

An innovative new Fashion Design curriculum will likely become a reality at Genesee Community College with the 2011-2012 academic year as the result of a proposal approved by the College’s Board of Trustees Monday evening.

An innovative new Fashion Design curriculum will likely become a reality at Genesee Community College with the 2011-2012 academic year as the result of a proposal approved by the College’s Board of Trustees Monday evening. Under the proposal, students pursuing Genesee’s popular Fashion Merchandising Management degree will be able to select either of two academic concentrations – the traditional concentration focusing on business skills or a new concentration focusing on apparel design. The core degree program remains the same, but the program will soon be known as “Fashion Merchandising and Design.” And the addition of a design curriculum will give students even more opportunities to prepare for careers in the fast-growing apparel industry, according to Dr. Eunice M. Bellinger, Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs.
The proposal will now be forwarded to the State University of New York for review. Following SUNY’s approval, the proposal will be forward to the New York State Education Department for final review and approval.
Fashion merchandising is a huge field, Dr. Bellinger said. It includes careers devoted to apparel market research, clothing design, distribution and logistics, wholesaling and retailing, advertising, and numerous support fields. Genesee has offered a program in fashion merchandising for three decades, and hundreds of graduates have gone on to highly successful careers regionally and nationally.
The new design concentration will include courses in Apparel Construction Fundamentals, Apparel Design and Draping, Fashion Industry Technologies, and Fashion Illustration. Students, external reviewers, and members of the College’s Fashion Merchandising Advisory Committee have suggested that the College begin a design concentration in response to new and emerging job opportunities, Dr. Bellinger said.
“Every single person is a customer of the apparel industry,” Dr. Bellinger noted. “Everyone needs clothing. Some people have a need or desire for specialty clothing, which can range from fashionable social wear to functional work attire. The industry continues to expand, and we want our students to be prepared to take full advantage of the career opportunities the industry offers regionally, nationally, and internationally.”

The overall Fashion Merchandising and Design program can be completed in two years of full-time study. Students earn 65 academic credits, which include English Communications, Computer Information Systems, Business, Speech, liberal arts electives, and courses specifically geared toward the fashion and retail industries.
The program is designed for students who wish to begin their careers immediately after receiving their Genesee degree. Many graduates, however, choose to transfer to colleges offering baccalaureate degrees, such as New York City’s prestigious Fashion Institute of Technology.
In other business this evening, the Board of Trustees:

  • Approved, upon the recommendation of the Board’s Personnel Committee, continuing (four-year) appointments for 23 faculty and staff members. They include Charmayne R. Bloom, Technical Assistant, Medina Campus Center; Tara E. Bradman, Records Information Specialist; Ramon C. Chaya, Director of Business and Employee Skills Training; Katherine A. Collette, Academic Advisor; Lauren M. Cummings, Technical Specialist, The BEST Center; Rebecca L. Dziekan, Director and Associate Professor of Health and Physical Education; Marirose T. Ethington, Professor of Biology; Candice S. Faulring, Instructor of Psychology; Tracy A. Ford, Associate Professor of English; Elizabeth C. Geuss, Tutorial/Assisted Lab Coordinator; Anne R. Heale, Technical Assistant, Arcade Campus Center; Santina Marsceill, Technical Assistant, The BEST Center; Kenneth J. Mead, Professor of Mathematics and Computer Information Systems; Ebony N. Ross, Technical Assistant, Admissions; Eric M. Sandler, Technical Specialist/Athletic Trainer; Mary Jane Shonn, Technical Assistant, Math, Science and Career Education; Margaret A. Sisson, Director of Athletics; Daniel E. Snyder, Technical Specialist, Accelerated College Enrollment Programs; Garth P. Swanson, Associate Professor of History; Timothy P. Tomczak, Professor of Psychology; Michael H. vonSchiller, Assistant Professor of Health and Physical Education; Carl M. Wahlstrom, Professor of Intermediate Studies and Sociology; and Anita Whitehead, Instructor/Reference Services Librarian.“Once again this year, the Personnel Committee was quite impressed with the accomplishments of the faculty and staff eligible for continuing appointments, both in the college and the community as well,” Trustee Melvin J. Wentland said. “We can all be very proud of their accomplishments.”
  • Approved a request for sabbatical leave from Professor of English Marie Iglesias-Cardinale. Professor Iglesias-Cardinale plans to develop changes to the College’s Creative Writing courses, particularly online courses. She also plans to compose an e-text (textbook in digital form) that can be used by students participating in Introduction to Creative Writing courses.
  • Heard Diane D. Torcello, Chair of the Presidential Search Advisory Committee, report that members of the committee are screening applications and nominations for Genesee’s fourth president this month.
  •  Heard President Stuart Steiner report that another record spring enrollment appears to be in store for Genesee. With only a week to go before Spring 2011 classes begin, enrollment is running 8.6% ahead of enrollment last year on the same date. “This is definitely a good news report,” Dr. Steiner told trustees. “Area students clearly recognize the importance of higher education and the exceptional value of Genesee Community College.” Dr. Virginia M. Taylor, Vice President for Student and Enrollment Services, said that as of December 31, 1,110 individuals had applied for admission this spring as full-time students, up 2.9% from the 1,079 individuals who had applied one year earlier. Four hundred seventy-three individuals had applied for admission as part-time students, up 4.2% from the 454 individuals who had applied exactly one year earlier.
  •  Heard Dr. Taylor report that 392 area high school students participated in the Summer 2010 Genesee Promise Plus program, up 11.7% from the 351 students who participated in 2009. Genesee Promise Plus offers June graduates of Genesee-Livingston-Orleans-Wyoming region high schools a scholarship for up to two summer courses at Genesee.
  •  Heard Vice President for Finance and Operations Kevin P. Hamilton report that the floor of the new art gallery will be installed this week. The gallery should be 100% complete by mid-February, Mr. Hamilton told trustees.
  • Heard Dr. Steiner report that Christie L. Thompson is joining the College’s staff as Technical Specialist for Recruitment Publications and Communications. Ms. Thompson comes to Genesee from a position as Senior Graphic Designer at Lazer, Inc. of East Aurora. She is a resident of Batavia. Dr. Steiner also reported that Thomas W. Kinsey is joining the staff as Technical Assistant for Enrollment Services Communication. He has served as a member of Genesee’s adjunct faculty and Finger Lakes Community College’s faculty. He has also served Community Action of Orleans and Genesee as an outreach specialist. Mr. Kinsey is a resident of Dansville.
  •  Heard Student Trustee Lori A. Mould report that students from all 64 campuses of the State University of New York will arrive in Albany March 15 for SUNY Palooza, the third annual Student Assembly Advocacy Day. During this event, students will rally in support of SUNY and advocate with state legislators on behalf of SUNY. Ms. Mould said that she plans to ask student government leaders at Genesee to help recruit participants.
  • Heard Ms. Mould report on the Batavia-Bayou Cross Cultural Connection, an event scheduled at the Batavia Campus February 18 and 19. The event will feature speakers from New Orleans who will relate their accounts of the hurricane which struck that city five years ago as well as residents’ and community leaders’ struggles with reconstruction. New Orleans Cajun-style food and music will be available during the event. Genesee Community College students assisted in reconstruction efforts during spring break last year, and Ms. Mould has been active in New Orleans relief efforts since the disaster. Dr. Eunice M. Bellinger, Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs told Ms. Mould that she, and faculty and staff members, are proud of her: “Your service and commitment is a real inspiration to other students. You are a role model.”

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