Undergraduate Programs in Fashion
The Fashion Design Major
The Bachelor of Arts in fashion design consists of two concentrations - conceptual concentration and technical design and production concentration.
Conceptual Design provides an understanding of the design process, from concept to creation, including research, illustration, flat sketches and garment construction appropriate to a specific market. Conceptual designers’ responsibilities are most directly related to the preliminary design concepts and ideas for any given season. This includes an understanding and mastery of research, color and story boards, the creation of original designs and the presentation of designs
Technical Design and production provides an understanding of garment construction, including the ability to analyze a garment and communicate to a factory how to construct it using the industry finishes appropriate to a specific market. This includes an understanding and mastery of tech packs, the creation of spec sheets and correcting fit.
Technical designers’ responsibilities are to communicate to factories the process required to perfect a design into a style and make the style producible so that the quality is appropriate for a specific market. Technical designers are extremely proficient in solving problems and paying attention to detail.
The Fashion Merchandising Major
Students in fashion merchandising acquire a thorough background in the business aspects of the industry, developing competencies in fashion theory; development and marketing of fashion goods; merchandising for apparel manufacturing; retail operations, management and buying; fashion forecasting and promotion. Students will earn a Bachelor of Science degree.
Freshman Students: Applicants must have at least a 2.75 cumulative grade point average (on a 4.0 scale) AND a minimum ACT composite score of 21 (or an SAT combined critical reading and math score of 980).
Transfer Students: To be considered for admission, transfer applicants need at least a 2.50 cumulative GPA based on 24 or more semester hours of college-level coursework at an accredited institution. Those students meeting this GPA requirement but with less than 24 semester hours will be evaluated as new freshmen.
Fashion Designers held about 22,700 jobs in 2008. About 31 percent of fashion designers worked for apparel, piece goods, and notions merchant wholesalers; and 13 percent worked for apparel manufacturers. Many others were self employed.
Employment of fashion designers tends to be concentrated in regional fashion centers. In 2008, the highest numbers of fashion designers were employed in New York and California.
(Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics)
Fashion Merchandising careers require a blend of fashion sense and business expertise. Loving to “shop” and “style” alone won't lead to a successful career in this field. Strategy and marketing know-how are an integral part of fashion merchandising.
In a fashion merchandising career, your goal is to make fashion relatable to the consumer. In order to do this, fashion merchandising careers involve the following:
- Buying products
- Negotiating with suppliers and manufacturers
- Conducting fashion marketing using research methodology
- Developing new products and brand management
- Selling and distributing brands as a vendor and wholesaler
- Analyzing, planning, and allocating of inventory to retail outlets
- Conducting promotional and public relations campaigns for product
- Managing retail operations in a single and multi-store environment