Are you constantly looking at new trends for home or business furnishings? Is your creative, adventurous side tugging at you to start your own apparel business?

The Department of Interior Design and Merchandising at East Carolina uses the expertise of both interior design and merchandising faculty to offer a bachelor’s degree in merchandising with apparel or an interiors concentration. The merchandising program is accredited by AAFCS (American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences) and partners with National Retail Federation (NRF). In 2012–2013, the merchandising program was ranked in top 15 percent among all United States fashion merchandising schools by fashion-school.org.

The interiors program at East Carolina produces quality professionals that are both passionate and skilled at their chosen profession in the interiors industry. Some career possibilities include distributing, marketing, and furnishing the interiors of homes and businesses.

Students have many exciting opportunities available to them including study abroad experiences, visit to major interior companies, and internships that will, no doubt, provide a rewarding bonus to your education.

Merchandising program areas of study include merchandising strategies, merchandising math, buying and sourcing, visual merchandising and computer-aided design lab; global textile, apparel and home furnishings, industry and economics, and consumer behavior. To make sure you are prepared to launch your career in merchandising, students are required to complete two internships and to minor in a discipline such as art, business administration, communication or hospitality management.

ECU Advantage

Our Apparel and Interior Merchandising Organization (AIMO) provides opportunities for students to learn more about careers, meet professionals in the field of merchandising, socialize with students who have similar interests, participate in service activities, and participate in terrific field trips. Additionally, ECU’s AIMO chapter hosts an annual fashion show featuring local boutiques and up-and-coming textile design students. The event raises money for the organization while also giving merchandising students a chance to produce their own fashion show.

The Merchandising Advisory Board consists of more than ten industry leaders from a variety of textile, apparel, and home furnishing industry sectors. These industry leaders meet with the merchandising faculty and students twice a year, providing industry insights, helping with fund raising, developing industry network, and serving as guest speakers in the classroom. It is these contacts along with our extensive alumni network that provide students with internships and post-graduation job opportunities.

What You Will Study

There is no catalog data for this program.

Careers With This Degree

Graduates with this degree are successful in many fields and careers, including the following:

  • Apparel and Textiles
  • Education and Training
  • Apparel and Textiles

Career Opportunities

ECU has developed resources to help you learn more about career opportunities and job market outlook. In addition, the websites below provide specific information on careers in the various majors from which students may choose:

NC Tower

This website provides graphs and tables of in-depth information on employment rates, wages and ongoing higher education enrollment of graduates from the North Carolina Community College System and from the University of North Carolina system schools. NC Tower includes data on former UNC students who are working in roughly 90% of all jobs in North Carolina. This database excludes information for graduates who are:

  • Self-employed;
  • Work for the federal government, including the military: or
  • Work outside of North Carolina.

US Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook

This website also provides in-depth information regarding pay, projected new jobs, required education, growth rate and on-the-job training information on various occupations.

Degree-specific internships

For information on internship information for specific majors, go to the home page of the department in which the major is located and, as available, find the link to the information on internships in that major.