Careers in e-commerce and online retailing are on the rise! As a way to encourage career paths in this exciting sector of the industry, Shop.org, NRF’s digital division, established the Ray M. Greenly Scholarship, in honor of a long-time staff member. Melissa Homa, a student at University of Arizona’s Lundgren Center for Retailing, was one of the scholarship recipients during the 2010-2011 academic year. We recently talked with Melissa, to get an update on how this scholarship has helped her towards a job and career in retail.
Ray Greenly Scholarship recipients should demonstrate a strong interest in e-commerce or online retailing. How has your coursework and/or work experience piqued your interest in this aspect of the industry?
I was first intrigued with the e-commerce field through my coursework in the Retailing and Consumer Sciences major at my University. I completed an e-commerce internship with Collective Brands Performance and Lifestyle Group in 2010, focusing on the four brands: Sperry Topsider, Keds, Stride Rite, and Saucony. I worked with the graphic design team, the international marketing team, and online merchandising department. I furthered my knowledge of the field with additional coursework in multichannel retailing as well as entering in the YMA Fashion Scholarship Fund case study of 2012. With this case, I competed and won with a business structure based solely in the non-store channels.
Scholarship recipients should also demonstrate leadership in the community or on campus. What activities have you been involved in at the University of Arizona?
I was the Vice President of Standards for my sorority, Vice President of Technology for Students In Free Enterprise, and a Student Ambassador for the Terry J. Lundgren Center for Retailing Corporate Advisory Board. I served as a student teaching assistant for two professors in academic courses. I am also a member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars as well as the National Society for Leadership and Success. I was awarded the title Outstanding Senior for the Graduating Class of May 2012 in Retailing and Consumer Sciences.
How have you used the scholarship funds?
The entirety of the scholarship amount has assisted my tuition expenses while attending the University of Arizona.
When are you graduating? Have you secured an internship or job in e-commerce or online retailing for when you graduate?
I am graduating in May 2012, and I’ve accepted a position with Macys.com in New York City, starting in August this year.
Congratulations to Melissa! We’re looking forward to hearing about more success from her, and other scholarship recipients, as they rise through the ranks in the retail industry. Look for updates from other recent Ray Greenly Scholarship winners on our Retail Careers Blog in the near future.