Des Moines Area Community College is the first community college in Iowa to offer the Western Association of Food Chains Retail Management Certificate.
“This certificate is an excellent combination of courses that relate to real work situations in the retail profession, said Business, Management and Technology Dean Drew Gocken. “Completion can offer students a pathway in the retail industry.”
Students earn the retail management certificate after completing 10 courses in the areas of marketing, communications, mathematics and human resources.
Gocken said the Retail Management Certificate was developed with the help of industry professionals.
“The class work closely aligns with what retail executives and managers are telling us they want the workforce to know,” Gocken said.
The DMACC Retail Management Certificate is endorsed by the Iowa Grocery Industry Association, a group that represents major local retailers such as Dahl’s; Fareway Stores Inc.; Hy-Vee Inc.; Casey’s General Store and Kum & Go.
“Our retail members embrace the DMACC Retail Management Certificate because it allows them to offer employees an opportunity to grow,” said Iowa Grocery Industry Association President Michelle Hurd.
Fareway Stores Inc. Chief Administrative Officer Scott Beckwith said the company values on-going educational opportunities for its employees.
Beckwith said an employee who completes the program will not only advance their own abilities but also strengthen the company.
“The DMACC courses are laser-focused and relevant to business success,” said Beckwith. “We are excited that many of our future retail leaders will have the opportunity to develop their business skills in this program.”
The DMACC Retail Management Certificate was developed in association with the national group, WAFC. WAFC promotes the food industry through leadership and education. The organization has helped implement similar programs in more than 135 community colleges. Once students complete the DMACC Retail Management Certificate they have met the criteria and can apply for a WAFC certificate.
Gocken said this is not just a certificate for those in the grocery industry. “The courses are beneficial to those pursuing careers in merchandising, customer service and fashion,” Gocken said.