By Patricia Grande
Photo of FLY store layout courtesy of the author
At the end of the Fall 2016 semester, students attending Florence University of the Arts worked at determined pace to finish up final projects that they had been working on all semester. Numerous courses are offered at the institution, and the course selections ultimately guide students towards a variety of projects from various disciplines.
For Madison Seguin, a senior from Syracuse, NY, her dreams of continuing her schooling in New York City have been granted. Seguin applied and was accepted into the graduate program at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, and is transitioning into this next phase upon her return from Florence. Getting to this point wasn't easy, she has worked extremely hard to get to where she is and the work has paid off. As Madison stressed, there was no room for error at both her home campus and during her studies abroad in Florence. School has been a major priority of Seguin’s since she was young.
Seguin integrated fashion classes into her academic schedule in Florence, and one in particular was a business-related class on Visual Merchandising. The semester's challenge was for her and her workgroup to design a floor plan for the FUA fashion department's retail store, FLY.
“Group projects are always a difficult task, because everyone has different schedules and trying to work around that can get to be a little hectic at times,” shared Seguin. Determined to accomplish the objectives, Seguin and her group worked online, brainstormed as a group, created a PowerPoint presentation, laid out the floor plan, and then presented the project to the faculty in Florence, to then set up the floor plan themselves, hands-on, at FLY. As an invaluable aspect of project and the coursework at large, Seguin emphasized how the group “was able to be involved in a real life experience related to the subject matter.”
When professors challenge students to work in groups like these it gives them each an opportunity to understand the hard work and dedication that goes into this career. Professors are fully aware of the commitment that is required for this field of work, and that is their aim for each project, it is to challenge the students to the best of their ability so they are able to see what the future holds.
“The project strengthened my perspective of Florence and the local community because it showed me that the Florentine community is tight knit and locals truly support each other and their goals and businesses, they respect traditional but are also open to implementing new ideas,” describes Seguin. This project was able to help her realize the work that the fashion community in Florence does in order to provide for those who live locally or are just traveling through.
Not only does the project challenge students, but through the challenge they are able to see different changes that are shown through themselves while working on it. “I enjoyed how creative the faculty members let us be and how they really push us to think outside of the box and trust our ideas enough to let us set up a store that is open to the public,” says Seguin. Students are able to tap their creative ability to create something that will be shown to the local community and not only in a class setting. This gives each student the drive to create something to his or her utmost ability.
Student-produced retail floorplans are updated constantly at FLY, visit us at:
Borgo Pinti 20r