B.S. Degree in Apparel Design and Development

You’ve always had a keen eye for clothing and fashion. At UW-Stout, you can transform your passion for style into a career in the clothing industry!

The apparel fashion industry is one of the largest industries in the United States. Americans spend billions of dollars each year on soft goods ranging from the latest apparel fashion to basic underwear.

The Apparel Design and Development program will help prepare you for the fast-paced exciting apparel industry. Knowledgeable faculty and up-to-date laboratories make UW-Stout a great place to develop your talents. Bobbin magazine described UW-Stout's apparel major as "one of the best kept secrets in apparel education."


Preparing for UW-Stout

Begin to learn about the apparel industry. Track fashion trends by reading magazines such as Elle, Vogue and Harper's Bazaar. Tour an apparel manufacturing company and interview people in apparel management positions. You can also get familiar with the program by checking our Facebook page.

High school students are encouraged to prepare by taking art, business, chemistry, computer basics, a language (Spanish recommended) and other college preparatory classes. Sewing skills are needed.

As You Progress

Students take courses in general education, a professional apparel core, a business core, and a concentration. The professional core of the program provides a wide range of courses in creative and technical design, to build a strong background needed for careers in apparel. Students may choose from three concentrations: Apparel Design, Apparel Development and Apparel Product Management. The program's elective credits may be used to complete a second concentration within the four-year course of study.

Most courses are project-oriented and are supported by excellent laboratories. These laboratories include apparel design and development, textiles, textile quality evaluation, computer-aided design, apparel product management, and historic costume.

Professional Experiences

Students gain experience through:

  • Internships with companies including:
    • Target
    • Land’s End
    • Marc Jacobs
    • Michael Kors
    • Alice Roy
    • Betsy Johnson
    • Diane Von Furstenberg
    • DKNY
    • Jill Stuart
    • Kohl’s
    • BCBG
    • J. Crew
    • Kimberly Clark
    • Burton Snowboards
    • Express
    • Vera Wang
  • Teachers' assistants
  • Class projects for industry
  • Participation in design shows
  • Guest lecturers from industry
  • Tours to fashion business and industry

Study and Travel

Students may choose to study abroad for a part of their education, which provides valuable learning experiences. UW-Stout has agreements with universities in Australia, France, Great Britain, Germany, Italy, Lithuania, Mexico, Spain, Sweden and Thailand. It is possible to complete an internship or co-op experience while studying abroad.

In addition, travel opportunities to study design, apparel trends and processes, and to attend theaters, museums, exhibits and conferences are available.

Making Connections

Learning extends beyond the classroom. The Silhouettes spring fashion show gives students the opportunity to make connections with others in the major and with professionals in the field. The fashion show is completely created, designed, and managed by students -- everything from the production of the show to the garments presented in it. In addition to the professional benefits of being a part of the fashion show, it’s also a great way to be social and meet new friends.

Rewarding Careers

Employment opportunities for Apparel Design and Development graduates are available in every sector of the apparel industry. While the Midwest is home to a number of companies that employ our graduates, there is an increasing need for people with apparel knowledge at the international level.

Entry career titles include Assistant Designer, Assistant Technical Designer, Production Assistant, Fabric Specialist, Trend Manager, and Assistant Manager of Quality Assurance.

Employment of 2012-13 graduates was 93 percent. Beginning salaries for graduates ranged from $18,000 to $78,000.

Monster Drawing Rally

Request More Information
Plan a Visit to UW-Stout
Transfer Information
Career Services
Find Us On Facebook
Join Our Linked In Group