top of page
  • Mikelle Drew

So, why SHOULD you go to fashion school?

Updated: Mar 15, 2022

In a previous post, I talked about why you don’t need to go fashion school to become a designer and alternate ways that you can get those skills. But I also mentioned at the beginning of that same post that if you have the time and money to go, you should. And I DO stand behind that. Here’s why:

If you saw my last blog, you're probably like, “OK, she just said don’t go to fashion school. Now, she’s saying I should go. What the what?” But in that blog, I did mention that I do support higher education and taking that route if you have the financial means and time because there are all kinds of benefits to a fashion design school. I’m going to share five (5) benefits with you today.

1. Learn the foundations of design.

There are lots of people who feel like “I have great ideas. I’m creative. I’m stylish. I’m going to be a fashion designer.” But there’s more to it than that.

A fashion school starts you off with the basics including how to construct a garment and the ‘why’ behind design. And the principles of good design. And that’s not something you just know. Even the best designers today didn’t just know how to design well. Besides practice, a good teacher helped guide most of them to understanding and knowing what good design looks like. It’s not just about making something beautiful, and a design program will teach you more than just aesthetic design skills.

2. Learning from a variety of instructors

When I was in school, there were a few instructors that I had more than once, but for the most part, I had different instructors for every course. And it was great because each teacher taught me something different. Not just because they were teaching different courses but because their work and life experiences were different and they brought that to class with them.

Diversity, as we’ve seen, in the past year and a half is important, and it’s not just ethnicity that brings diversity. It’s also about experiences. And we all benefit from that. Someone may have a totally different answer to the same question but it may resonate more with the person asking. Or one person may not have an answer to your question because they’ve never experienced it but someone else does because they have. And being able to share that knowledge is one of my favorite benefits of being part of a fashion institution. And as a faculty member, I can say that the sharing goes both ways. I learn as much from my students as they do from me.

3. Networking with other designers.

When you’re in school, you are living a shared experience with many other creatives. And that’s pretty powerful! Not only are you surrounded by people who know exactly what you are going through, but more importantly, you’re surrounded by people who have the same goals and dreams as you do, understand how important getting your degree is, can help build your confidence when you’re feeling down, and hold you accountable for finishing your projects.