Professional Distinction in Retailing

The Professional Distinctions complement the student’s degree and provide tangible evidence of rigorous experiential preparation for a career in the specific career track. The Professional Distinction in Retailing is a semester-by-semester recognition, with all points tracked through the Canvas platform.

Students must receive 400 points through high impact opportunities in order to receive the recognition for the semester. Students who complete four semesters of the Professional Distinction (which can be completed in the fall, spring, and summer semesters) in a specific track will receive a medal to wear at graduation.

Students who are pursuing a professional distinction in retailing must first sign up HERE to be added into our roster. Students are encouraged to join the Student Retailing Association as many of the point opportunities offered come directly through SRA, and these two programs work hand-in-hand together. To be considered an active member of SRA, a student must earn 300 points throughout the semester. An additional 100 points helps the student earn the distinction. Other points opportunities can include but are not limited to:

For questions, please contact:

Thomas McMillan

Download our Professional Distinction in Retailing flyer. 


How to Earn Points and get Distinction:

Required: Actively participate in the Student Retailing Association (SRA) . Earn 400 points in a semester, as outlined by the Club’s rules.  Students must earn a minimum of 100 points in each of these three areas but complete 400 total points in the semester to earn a distinction:

Networking (at least 100 points) 

Attend guest speaker lectures

Attend career fairs

Networking events with potential employers

Experience (at least 100 points)

Relevant internships

Part  time work

Retail projects

SRA Officer

Certification & Training (at least 100 points)

Relevant certification programs

Coursework (NOT including required curriculum) Workshops

Subscription to a relevant journal


Point values for various activities: 

Internships – 250 points
– Must be retail-related
– After the internship, complete a one page reflection about your experience and submit it to Canvas

Externships – 100 points
– Must be retail-related
– After the internship, complete a one page reflection about your experience and submit it to Canvas

Training Certificates – 50 points
– Complete any four trainings from the suggested list for 50 points
– You must complete all four trainings to receive any points
– Submit proof of completion to Canvas

LinkedIn Learning – 100 possible points
– 10 points each
– To earn points, select a course to watch
– Once the course is complete, write a one-page, double-spaced reflection on the course you selected and explain how the information you learned applies to you and your career.
– Submit the reflection to Canvas
– LinkedIn Learning playlist (coming soon!)

NRF Retail Leadership Series – up to 100 points
– Hear from some of retail’s top CEOs about pivotal moments in their career, advice for aspiring retail leaders, and leading through times of crisis, the state of retail and the way forward for the industry
– 10 points each, up to 100 points
– To earn points, watch a previous Retail Leadership Series or sign-up for the next in the series HERE
– Write a half-page, double-spaced reflection on the series you watched highlighting key takeaways you learned and how you can apply them to you and your career goals
– Submit the reflections to Canvas

Follow us on Social Media – 40 possible points
– Each follow is worth 10 points for a total of 40 possible points
– Follow us on Instagram @tamuretail, on Facebook @Center for Retailing Studies, on LinkedIn @Center for Retailing Studies, and on Twitter @tamuretail
– Submit proof of your follow (a screenshot is ideal) to Canvas

Build your Network with Conversational Interviews – 50 possible points
– 10 points each
– Reach out to your current retail leader contacts, or connect with new ones
– Schedule a time to visit with them over the phone or via Zoom
– Ask them about their career path that led them to where they are today
– Submit a half-page, double-spaced reflection to Canvas that includes: name of the person you connected with, their title, their company, how you reached out to them, and what you spoke about

Other point opportunities such as lunch & learns, various travel credits (i.e. PLMA, NYFW, NRF, or HQ Tours), and points related to the Retailing Career Fair will be updated as they are available. Students pursuing the distinction also have the option of submitting other opportunities for points that may not be listed. These will need to be approved by Professor Thomas McMillan, who can be reached at