By Destiny Diggs
Fashion merchandising students will be traveling to Paris from March 9 to 16 to study the fashion roots of Paris, France. “Paris is the epicenter of fashion. It’s the perfect place for us to begin this journey,” Professor Cherie Serota, director of the fashion merchandising program, said. There are currently eight students going to Paris and there are more students in the process of registering. Students will leave in the evening on March 9 on an Air France flight. The trip is open to students of all majors.
The goal of this trip is to allow students to visit Paris and learn a different culture through the eyes of fashion and business. “I as well as other faculty and persons from College Tours (the company that the fashion and merchandising program), has partnered with students to experience a different culture and see what a different culture brings to us by looking at things in a global universe,” Serota said. Students will study culture, music, art, fashion, business, and will collaborate with Parisian students to see how they work.
On the first full day of the trip, students will go on a walking tour in Paris to visit Notre-Dame Cathedral, the Seine River, the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre Palace, the Palais Garnier (opera house), and the Palais Galliera. Dinner will be in the Latin Quarter and St.Michel.
While in Paris, the students will get hands on experience during a fashion exchange with the students at the Fashion Institute of Paris. Also, scheduled during the trip are a historical walking tour of Paris which will allow students and faculty to see Paris through the lenses of fashion, a trip to the Nathalie Au store to learn how fabric is cut, and visits to numerous show-rooms, boutiques, and notable fashion sites will also be in students’ reach.
“We are going to do organized dinners while other times students will have time have time to go on their own and explore Paris,” Professor Serota said.
Students will earn one credit for a global studies course for participating in the trip. The students will complete an outcome assessment at the end of the trip with different objectives about the experience. Those that go on the Paris trip will learn the significance of global economy.
“You can start up a business in any country, there are no limitations with the internet, we are a global economy right now,” Serota said. Faculty will challenge students’ thinking by helping them think outside of their usual environment. Students will also be immersed in the Parisian culture, learning firsthand what it is like to live globally.
The fashion club will be holding several fundraisers for the trip throughout March to aid students going on the trip. Students interested in the trip can contact the financial aid office to learn more.
Serota believes that the best way to learn the history of fashion is by witnessing where fashion began. This trip offers knowledge that a textbook is not capable of offering. “Studying fashion is not just about learning through a book, it’s really about seeing, doing, feeling,” Serota said. There are textures, fabrics and showrooms that will become students’ classroom in a country that is responsible for the history of fashion.
The trip to Paris is the first trip the fashion merchandising program is sponsoring. Serota’s goal is to take students on a trip to a different country, every year, and offer more financial assistance. Some cities being considered for future trips are Milan, Florence, and Rome.