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Ursuline’s Fashion Design and Fashion Merchandising programs are known for their small class size and big reputation. Both programs are nationally ranked, and among the top 20 fashion programs in the Midwest. A partnership with FIT in New York City (the #1 Fashion program in the US) allows students to spend their junior year living and studying at the center of the industry.

Ursuline’s Unique Approach

Ursuline’s students prepare for the fashion industry through rigorous course work in design, merchandising, retail, graphics, textiles, apparel construction and production culminating in a student fashion show, Innovations, each year. Recent shows have included collections of wearable folded paper dresses.

Fashion Field study trips take students to various cities, including Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, New York City, Toronto, Columbus or our very own Cleveland. During these trips, students network with alumnae designers and industry leaders.

Ursuline’s partnership with the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) in New York City gives both Fashion Design and Merchandising majors the opportunity to spend their Junior year living and studying at the center of the industry.

Service learning, including a partnership with the organization HELP Malawi, sends Ursuline fashion students to Africa to teach sewing skills and encourage entrepreneurship in a developing country. 

Ursuline students have hands-on access to the College’s Historic Costume Study Collection that includes more than 3,500 pieces of 20th century American apparel and accessories.

Our small size is integral to success in producing outstanding graduates.  Our fashion students have opportunities to interact with top fashion faculty, retailers, branding, and community experts in the fashion industry.”  - Dr. Connie Korosec, Professor and Chair of the Fashion Design and Merchandising Department.

Fashion Design

Ursuline’s Fashion Design courses cover all aspects of the design: inspiration, illustration, fundamental pattern making, draping and final presentation of a designed collection. 

Ursuline fashion design graduates are employed all over the country.  The fashion industry offers graduates a variety of career options: Apparel designer, Technical Designers, Apparel manufacturer, costume designer, retailing, illustrator, CAD designer, stylists, fashion forecaster, restoration preservation and product development. 

“I have been fortunate to share my sewing and fashion obsession with students for over fifteen years.  It’s truly an honor to assist and watch student evolve from idea to sketch, drape to muslin and pattern to outfit.” - Jennifer Knaus, ‘96 Fashion Design Instructor

Fashion Merchandising

Ursuline’s Fashion Merchandising courses cover all aspects of the business of fashion, including product development and branding, visual merchandising and buying, advertising, and fashion show production.

Ursuline Fashion Merchandising graduates are employed all over the country in roles such as Buyers, Manufacturer’s representatives, Fashion Communications, Fashion Marketing, Fashion Forecasters, Textile and Fashion Publications, Mall Advertising, Visual Merchandisers, Retail Managers, Brand Ambassadors, Stylists, and Market Consultants. 

 “Throughout my Fashion Merchandising career I was given the amazing challenge to launch the children’s wear college at Tommy Hilfiger. I’ve travelled the world sourcing global production and manufacturing for Tommy Jeans and children’s wear.  Since 2003, I have shared my experience in the apparel industry and love fashion through teaching.  I love bringing the real world into my curriculum by connecting with local apparel industry in Cleveland.” - May Beard ’03, Instructor of Fashion