Born and raised in Philadelphia, Brittany Rae Buckmire was surrounded by inspiration. She spent her childhood exploring thought-provoking art, diverse cultures, and the vibrant energy the state was known for. Naturally, she developed a passion for fashion. As a high school student, she collected magazines from around the world, studied fashion shows, watched documentaries, leveraged literature to learn from the greats, and completed summer internships in New York.
When the time came to look into colleges, she wanted one with a strong sense of community that could help her grow her craft. Buckmire longed to find an institution near his home that exemplified Philadelphia’s freedom of exploration and discovery. Thomas Jefferson Universityit is business school made perfect sense and his BS in Fashion Merchandising and Management fully complemented his aspirations.
“While I loved the creative and design-driven aspects of the industry, I was also very drawn to the behind-the-scenes business aspects and wanted a program that gave me the freedom and flexibility to continue exploring both. lanes,” says Buckmire. .
This is Jefferson’s transdisciplinary approach to learning. Here, undergraduate and graduate students engage in various disciplines to gain a broader understanding from many perspectives. In the process, they develop the critical decision-making skills needed to solve complex problems. Delivery is also customizable with some courses offered online or in hybrid mode
Buckmire’s Jefferson experience involved switching from his corporate marketing class to the sewing shop from time to time. “These switches helped me see end-to-end how a product comes to life, from sourcing to production to sales,” she enthuses. “Each intimate classroom seemed designed to set me up for success from my first day on the job.”
Personalized attention is a hallmark of Jefferson that ensures every learner gets the expert guidance they deserve. Buckmire has formed lasting relationships with several teachers who have made it their mission not only to teach, but also to nurture. “They are all incredible professionals who have invested so much in my education, personal development and career path during my undergraduate studies and beyond!” she says.
Their guidance was crucial when Buckmire undertook his internships at Skai Blue Media and United By Blue. Like Nexus Learning – Jefferson’s commitment to experiential learning – she used these internships as an opportunity to build her skills in professionalism, communication and industry skills. “It was really rewarding to see the things I learned in class come to life in a real-life setting,” she says.
“I loved studying in Philadelphia because I felt there were many opportunities to excel in college while also maturing as a leader and building a strong professional network beyond campus. The city is big with lots of energy and excitement, but it still exudes enough privacy for me to feel a strong sense of place.
Today, Buckmire is a senior buyer at Stitch Fix for W’s Activewear. She leads a team of buyers to ensure people are matched with the products they are looking for. His work revolves around data and algorithms, works closely with various parties, and curates a world-class sportswear assortment.
Another Philadelphia native, Cynthia Matje, has an equally impressive story to tell. Her attraction to Jefferson also began with a desire to study in an environment that was as tranquil as it was dynamic. “The East Falls campus in Jefferson was, for me, the perfect middle ground between the two,” she says. “It offers a peaceful and quaint campus atmosphere with a suburban feel located in Philadelphia, a stone’s throw from downtown.”
Growing up in a connected community inspired her interest in people’s stories and backgrounds. Matje was compelled to make a career out of the appreciation she felt for the unique culture, tradition and family history that exists outside of her immediate surroundings. Curiosity led her to decide to pursue a BS in International Business to Jefferson – the package came with the wise advice of his adviser.
“The International Business Program Director pushed me to take full advantage of everything Jefferson had to offer, especially the International Business Program and the Study Abroad Program,” says Matje. The trip took her to the University of Salamanca in Spain. Her advisor also encouraged her to join the School of Business Advisory Council and engage with students on campus for career advice and mentorship.
The collective experience prepared Matje for leadership. Prior to her current role as Senior Vice President of Citizens Commercial Banking, she added value at JP Morgan Chase, Ben Franklin Technology Partners and Wells Fargo Capital Finance.
“Jefferson’s faculty and program provided me with a solid foundation in accounting and finance, critical thinking, and problem solving, and enhanced my ability to work as an important contributor within a given team” , she shares. “These are core strengths that I have carried with me throughout my career and have served me well.”