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South Dakota State University Alumna Goes Big Time

Dana Chavez poses in front of Fashion Nova sign.
Dana Chavez poses in front of Fashion Nova sign.

BROOKINGS, S.D. – Roadside traffic stops and conversations rarely consist of good news, especially when it comes to people in uniform, but South Dakota State University alumna, Dana Chavez is benefitting from one specific traffic stop. Chavez, who completed her advertising degree in the spring of 2018, is pursuing her dream job at Fashion Nova, the top online fashion store for women’s apparel based out of Los Angeles. Her connection into the fashion industry started with a conversation between her father, a law enforcement officer, and a company executive on a roadside traffic stop this past summer. 

Founded in 2013, Fashion Nova is an online company based out of downtown Los Angeles with five retail locations in Southern California. Fashion Nova has gained a lot of traffic not only throughout the U.S. but also internationally because of its affordable and trendy clothing.

Chavez is a merchandiser for Fashion Nova. She is responsible for the look and feel of its website. Any time there is anything new or interesting she is responsible for making sure that it gets moved to the front of the website where customers can easily see it and access it. A typical day in Chavez’s life at work involves moving merchandise and receipts. This takes a lot of work since they get hundreds of orders per day. Then she spends the rest of her day in meetings with buyers about what is selling and what isn’t selling. Then she goes back to merchandise categories based on the best and worst sellers.  

Chavez chose advertising not only because of all the ways you can help people, but she really enjoys the creative and design aspect of it. The advertising program at SDSU provided an introduction to product positioning and promotion for Chavez. Fashion Nova then supplemented Chavez with more knowledge for their industry specific programs. Chavez enjoys learning all this new information on top of what she already learned from school because it keeps her engaged with her work. She loves the fast-paced fashion world because it is constantly changing and she never stops learning which makes work fun. 

Relatively new to the company, Chavez is making giant steps in her new career in fashion. Although just a website merchandiser right now, she is slowly learning the role of an assistant buyer and is going to apply for the position this coming January. She hopes to make her way up the ladder in the fashion world. 

Originally from the Los Angeles area, Chavez started her journey at South Dakota State University through a four-year athletic scholarship to play softball.  She spent her career playing various positions in the outfield. Not only did she shine on the field, but she received the Iron Jack award for outstanding work in the weight room. Academically, she completed her degree in advertising and was involved in Advertising Club and SAC (Student-Athlete Committee). Chavez was a dedicated student-athlete while also putting in volunteer hours for numerous places around Brookings.