Nurturing Talent…One Mentor at a Time

“Mentoring is a dying art but we are trying to revive it,” said Peter Sachse, chairman of macys.com and Macy’s chief marketing officer. Although the art of mentoring has been lost and forgotten by many, those at the YMA Fashion Scholarship Fund are vehement on preserving it and passing its value on to the next generation.

On Wednesday evening, about 30 of the top industry officials, including Wes Card of Jones Group, Michael Setola of Greg Norman, John Goodman of Sears Holdings, Anne Rohosy of Dockers, Karen Murray of Nautica, Frank Tworecke of Warnaco and YMA president Jimmy Rosenfeld of Fishman & Tobin, gathered at the Macy’s Herald Square. The purpose of this illustrious gathering was to discuss ways to nurture the rising and future talent of the industry. In a quote from WWD, Sachse stated, “there’s a war for talent.” However, by reaching out to young people early when they’re still students and embarking on careers, “we can get them interested and very excited about working for omni-channel companies.” Also present at the event was Alexandra Dumas, a YMA scholarship recipient and recent graduate who will begin working at macys.com this coming September. Dumas was quoted by WWD proclaiming, “the retail industry can be intimidating,” but that she felt, “so tremendously lucky” to get the mentoring provided by YMA.

With the YMA celebrating its 75th anniversary, it is fascinating to reflect back on how far the YMA has come and developed over the years. The once all male networking unit has grown into a group aimed for young scholars eager to enter the competitive fashion industry. To date, the YMA has raised $7 million in scholarship money for more than 700 worthy students. “We need to invest in the next generation of industry leaders,” said Paul Rosengard, head of men’s wear for LF USA. “Education is the great equalizer and the YMA promotes this on multiple levels.”

With the YMA Fashion Scholarship around, and with its continuous support and dedicated benefactors, such as the major contributor The Geoffrey Beene Foundation, which has donated over $3 million, mentoring as well as fresh talent will continue to bring new leaders and workers to the fashion industry.

For the full article check out: http://www.wwd.com/retail-news/yma-eyes-ways-to-nurture-talent-3684270

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