Fashion Design Alum Credits CTE Program for Successful Career

May 10, 2018

Rachel Martin is an associate production manager for J. Crew, working on jewelry, hair accessories and sunglasses as well as product development for all the company’s brands. She credits her experience as a Fashion Design and Merchandising student at The Tech Center at PNW BOCES, when she was a high school senior, with helping her start her career off right.
“I enjoyed spending half of my day at BOCES,” said the 2011 Hendrick Hudson High School graduate. “I learned so many things about merchandising and design from my teacher, Lisa Tobin.”
A graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT), Martin said what she learned at The Tech Center was instrumental in helping her get into FIT. “I am so grateful to have had Ms. Tobin as a teacher,” she said. “I remember the day I got in to FIT, I was at BOCES and got to celebrate with my whole class.”
In her role at J. Crew, Martin works on both production and product development. “We work with the factories on getting samples made and also on negotiating costs,” she said. “It is the best of both worlds for me because I love seeing the process from idea to finished product, but I also like working in Excel on costing and spreadsheets.”
Students in the Fashion Design and Merchandising program learn all aspects of fashion design, including fashion illustration, patternmaking, hand sewing, and machine sewing. They also learn the business aspects of the industry, including marketing strategies used to develop, distribute and showcase today’s fashion.
When reminiscing about The Tech Center, Martin said, “I wouldn’t have done my senior year in high school any other way! For students who know what they want to do so early in life, it is a great place to master those skills and stand out from the crowd of college applicants!”
Fashion Design and Merchandising alum Rachel Martin works at J. Crew.