More than 1,000 excited students attended the NRF Foundation Student Program in New York City, January 11-12. In two days packed with educational sessions, networking opportunities, store tours and many more events, students specializing in every aspect of retail — including merchandising, supply chain, information technology and fashion design — came together to learn about how retail is a great place to start and develop a rewarding career.
The program was off to an energetic start with welcome addresses by Former Chair of the NRF Foundation board Karen Katz and Ellen Davis, president of the NRF Foundation.
.@NRFFoundation President @ellendavis and Karen Katz welcoming this year's Student Program attendees and giving them a few gems on the importance of staying curious in your career and being open to a variety of experiences. #Retailsfuture #NRF2019 pic.twitter.com/h4nxMZXvAk— NRF (@NRFnews) January 11, 2019
Students in tech heard from leading retailers about how IT helps retailers create seamless customer experiences:
I can’t get over how smart, nice, cool and funny this tech panel is. Makes me want to go back to college & learn how to code. #retailsfuture pic.twitter.com/s96MD3YLa1— Ellen Davis (@ellendavis) January 11, 2019
And Intel encouraged STEM students to explore career opportunities in retail:
@Intel honored to sponsor #retailsfuture through @NRFFoundation by engaging 100+ future #STEM students that will create the future. @kohlscampus @lifeatpetsmart @homedepotcareer @wayfair @awscloud @targetcareers @pvhcorp @walmart @xrclabs @forrester #iamintel #nrf2019 pic.twitter.com/8grzpoIuIp— Rachel (@RachelMushahwar) January 10, 2019
For a more hands-on experience, students had a chance to visit stores and see retail in action with curated store tours, including at The Home Depot:
We hosted the #NRF2019 Student Program Talk & Tour today at our Manhattan store. Thank you to all who attended – enjoy your new DIY art! #retailsfuture pic.twitter.com/jfaAQzZzAT— Home Depot Careers (@HomeDepotCareer) January 10, 2019
Jo Malone, founder of Jo Loves, gave a rousing keynote to close out the program, encouraging every student to pursue their dreams, believe in themselves and never take no for an answer.
The NRF Foundation also welcomed Chairman and CEO of Macy’s Inc. Jeff Gennette as the new chairman of the Foundation board.
On Sunday night, Levi Strauss & Co. President and CEO Chip Bergh will be recognized with The Visionary award for his leadership and rebuilding the brand at the NRF Foundation Gala.
Don't miss a beat! Follow @NRFFoundation for more content after the curtain closes, including blog posts and video.