As part of this look at American colleges and universities, WWD surveyed nearly 1,300 college students around the country to gauge their current consumer preferences and brand awareness. The survey also looked at the publications they turn to for information and entertainment and the celebrities they consider influential. The group was not a random sample. Instead, respondents hailed from focus groups, sororities, marketing classes and one-on-one interviews. All were interested enough in matters of style to spend about 30 minutes on the survey, some offering detailed responses to open-ended questions.

Key unprompted questions asked students, both women and men, to name their favorite labels to shop for in each of 12 categories, up to three per category: jeans, T-shirts, tops/sweaters, sweatshirts, footwear/sneakers, bags/backpacks, makeup/beauty, formalwear/dresses, outerwear, swimwear, underwear and socks/hosiery. Students were also asked to list their top three "if money were no object" labels.

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