Apparel Design BS

Students wearing fashions designed for all genders by an apparel design senior at the 2020 fashion show

About the program

Program Details

Students in our Bachelor of Science program learn to use the design process to develop wearable products for real bodies and real people while focusing on sustainability. Our program has three tracks: fashion design, technical design, and fashion and technical design.

Fashion Design Track

The fashion design track emphasizes developing aesthetic concepts in apparel. In this track, you will develop your skills in front-end research and understanding trends, aesthetics, art in fashion, fashion illustration, 3D rendering, and developing creative concepts. In interdisciplinary coursework, you'll work with retail merchandising students, technical designers, and other design students to develop cross-functional skills.

Technical Design Track

The technical design track digs into the engineering of apparel products. Apparel students in this track develop their skills in patternmaking and fit, quality, manufacturing, and functional clothing applications. Technical design students also branch out in cross-functional ways to fashion design and to retail merchandising and other design disciplines.

Fashion and Technical Design Track

Students in the fashion and technical design track develop their skills in both aesthetic concepts and the engineering of apparel products. This track includes the requirements from the other two tracks and has less room for electives. Students in this track develop deep skills in the end-to-end fashion design and product development process.

Career possibilities
Required Internship

The purpose of the required internship is to provide you with an opportunity to work in a professional environment under the guidance of design professionals. It is an important transition step between your education and your professional career. The most commonly requested time to do your for-credit internship is during your junior (third) year or the following summer, when you are likely to have completed ADES 3227 Technical Design Studio and ADES 3224W Apparel Design Studio IV. Completion of three to four apparel design studio courses, along with their respective prerequisites, should prepare you to do well in the workplace and give you the necessary background to learn as much as possible while doing your internship.

Learn more about the apparel design required internship

Senior Fashion Showcase

Since 1968, apparel design students at the University of Minnesota have presented their final projects in the annual Apparel Design Senior Fashion Showcase. You will begin to develop your collection during the spring semester of your junior year and work with industry mentors to focus your research, inspiration, and find your target audience. Production of your collection begins the fall of your senior year, with the final showcase at the beginning of spring semester senior year. 

Together each senior class decides on their showcase title and helps to organize the event. Each year the students’ clothing lines draw hundreds of fashion industry professionals, students, family, and friends to the showcase, creating an opportunity for you to engage with the larger fashion community.

Learn more

Amplified Unique Voices Heard
"Amplified: Unique Voices Heard" was the title and theme of the 2020 Apparel Design Senior Fashion Show.
Learning Abroad
Students sightseeing and taking photographs of the Necropolis of Pantalica in Sicily, Italy

You will have the opportunity to extend your apparel design education globally through learning abroad programs in fashion hubs such as London, Florence, and Sydney. You can also elect to participate in short-term study tours to New York or various international destinations. These experiences will expand your creative vision and build a worldwide fashion perspective that will give you an edge in the marketplace.

More Learning Abroad

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The centralized online application will guide you through the necessary materials and steps.