10 Best Fashion Schools in Pennsylvania in 2024 | How to Apply


Are you passionate about fashion? Then prepare to hone your artistic abilities and commit to designing future styles through our ranking of the best fashion schools in Pennsylvania.

A degree in fashion design will help you develop your talents and prepare for a new job, regardless of whether you want to create apparel for men, women, kids, or specialty fashion.


Since a design job encompasses so many facets, many fashion design students in Pennsylvania decide to complete a four-year Bachelor’s degree.

You should anticipate working in the studio throughout your studies because creative abilities play a big part in producing garments. Being a talented artist alone is insufficient! Additionally, you must be able to draw in a fashion industry-accepted style.


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Many schools require you to take courses like:

  • Fashion Sketching
  • Sketching for Design
  • Fashion Illustration

Is Fashion Designing a Good Career Path in Pennsylvania?

A career in fashion design can lead to success that exceeds your highest expectations. Perseverance, originality, and the capacity to accept criticism are valued qualities in this field. You might spend a lot of time at the beginning of your career listening to others with more expertise and studying how to advance your design profession. 


After attending college for a different job and discovering her passion for fashion, Pennsylvania fashion designer Liz Rymar created the clothing brand that prominent celebrities have worn. She learned what fashion-conscious ladies desired thanks to her education at fashion design school and heeded their call. 

However, Pennsylvanian fashion designers must thoroughly understand fabric, draping, and how different cuts and patterns fall on the body. There is no other way to master this but via experience and trial and error.

Lots of curricula include classes like:

  • Pattern Drafting
  • Draping Techniques
  • Computer-Aided Pattern Drafting

Also, you must understand the past to understand the fashion business’s future. You should enroll in classes that allow you to study the history of fashion design because many past trends still impact current trends. You might be the one who revives a fantastic sensation!

According to O*Net, the annual pay for a fashion designer in Pennsylvania is $43,050. (2016) The fashion business you work in, your years of experience, and other things can affect your salary. 

Although there aren’t any licensing bodies in Pennsylvania for fashion designers, you can find out more by attending regional events. Philadelphia Fashion week and Pittsburgh Fashion Week are Pennsylvania’s largest fashion shows.

You may be able to venture further and explore your design concepts if you have a solid understanding of the fashion scene in your area and what your target market needs. Because Pennsylvania has significant fashion hubs like Pittsburgh and Pennsylvania, it can be a great spot to start a career in fashion design. 

Check Out This: Best Fashion Schools in Massachusetts

Are there Fashion Schools in Pennsylvania?

There are many schools offering fashion courses in Pennsylvania. Some of these fashion schools are listed below:

  • Albright College
  • Drexel University
  • Moore College of Art & Design
  • Harcum College
  • Mercyhurst University
  • Immaculata University
  • Indiana University of Pennsylvania
  • Lehigh Carbon Community College
  • Made Institute
  • Philadelphia University
  • The Art Institute of Philadelphia
  • Thomas Jefferson University
  • Cheyney University of Pennsylvania
  • Kaplan Career Institute-Pittsburgh
  • Marywood University
  • Pace Institute
  • Temple University
  • The Art Institute of Pittsburgh
  • The Art Institutes of York-PA

Read Also: Best Fashion Schools in North Carolina

How Long Does it Take to Get a Degree in Fashion in Pennsylvania?

In Pennsylvania, two-year associate’s degree programs in fashion design teach students to core technical design skills like tailoring, sewing, and fundamental fashion theories.

Furthermore, four-year bachelor’s degree programs integrating technical instruction with creative and intellectual development are available for in-depth career training. Fashion sketching, 3-D design, color theory, textiles, computer-aided design, a fashion business, and portfolio presentation are among the courses offered.

Fashion designers combine their technical and artistic abilities to create a wide range of clothing and accessories. Designers often conduct market research and produce original products to keep on top of current trends and foresee the next fads.

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How Much Do Fashion Schools in Pennsylvania Cost?

In Pennsylvania, the average cost of tuition is $21,391. However, community institutions offer tuition as low as $5,760.

You may be eligible to apply for one of the numerous Pennsylvania DECA scholarships available. One of Pennsylvania’s three Art Institute campuses may accept applications for the Passion for Fashion Scholarship and the Art Institutes Scholarship Award, among other scholarships.

Although you might apply for your new fashion degree in various ways, most of the work opportunities you find are probably at stores, marketing, and fashion design firms.

Pennsylvania’s fashion industry employers include DSW Shoes, Bloomingdales, and Destination XL Group. In Pennsylvania, where the unemployment rate is 6.9 percent, now might be a fantastic moment to start a new profession.

How much experience you have as a fashion professional greatly impacts your pay. Fashion designers typically make $60,890 a year, while item displayers might make an average of $29,350 yearly (BLS, 2012). The average yearly wage for marketing professionals is $63,770.

Don’t Fail Also to Read: Best Fashion Schools in New York City

What are the Requirements of Fashion Schools in Pennsylvania?

Since the fashion industry is constantly evolving and changing, breaking into it may be difficult. Fortunately, you can begin a career in fashion by attending one of the many prestigious fashion schools. A fashion degree might be your choice if you enjoy being creative and have outstanding taste.

Being accepted into a fashion school is difficult because many of the schools have low admission rates. Each fashion school is unique and has its own requirements for enrollment. If you decide that fashion school is the best option, you must prepare for the application process. You must compile the necessary information and do research, including:

  • Submit your school transcripts or GED
  • Complete an application form
  • Pay an application fee
  • Write an admission essay
  • Submit SAT or ACT scores
  • Submit recommendation letters
  • Show your portfolio

See Also: Top 10 Best Fashion Design Schools in Canada

What are the Best Fashion Schools in Pennsylvania?

Listed below with some information about them are the best fashion schools in Pennsylvania:

1. Albright College

Albright College’s fashion department aims to mold students into responsible citizens and accomplished professionals.

Students graduate from the program with the critical thinking abilities and adaptability that are essential in our ever-changing world because it is housed within a liberal arts college.

Students majoring in fashion can choose the Design, Merchandising, Costume Design, or Design & Merchandising route.

As of 2011, Albright College offers the following degrees:

  • B.A. Fashion, Design Track
  • B.A. Fashion, Merchandising Track
  • B.A. Fashion, Costume Design Track
  • B.A. Fashion, Design & Merchandising Track

A B.S. degree typically takes four years to complete, an M.S. degree typically takes two years, and a Ph.D. program typically takes two or more years to complete.

In their senior year, students must perform an internship. These internships range in geography and business type, and there are chances both domestically and internationally in industries like retail buying, marketing, public relations, and retail visual merchandising. Opportunities to study abroad are also available.

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2. Drexel University

Visionary designers are educated and trained by Drexel’s Fashion Design department to utilize an integrated strategy while developing current clothing in the context of a growing yet convergent global economy and society.

First-year students investigate the issues our sector is experiencing through several courses, learning how to use inclusive, ethical, and sustainable solutions in their sourcing, manufacturing, production, and presentation design processes. 

Through several courses in the second year, students use 3-D computer tools to design patterns and construct clothing.

Third-year students receive commercial studio/atelier training through the university’s cooperative education program that complements their academic studies.

Students majoring in fashion design complete a six-month co-op program, working full-time with renowned designers and domestic and foreign companies in New York City, Los Angeles, and other fashion-focused locations worldwide. 

However, cooperative education gives students priceless chances to see and participate in the fashion business firsthand. All upper-level courses feature critiques from visiting experts who offer useful “real world” insight and connections for potential future employment.

Additionally, students can enroll in various intensive courses abroad (ICA), such as Drexel’s Fashion Break in South Korea: Korean Fashion Industry in Seoul, one of Korea’s major fashion hubs.

Also, students studying fashion design showcase their senior theses and research in a live fashion show and online portfolio. The student’s purpose is to improve the world via fashion, and fashion is a thorough showcase of their work, design ethos, in-depth process photographs, and personal designer interviews.

The curriculum cultivates students’ capacity for critical thought, research and problem-solving, and the application of creative solutions in a competitive global marketplace.

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Read Also: Best Fashion Schools in London UK

3. Indiana University of Pennsylvania

Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s Fashion Merchandising program aims to prepare students for the dynamic and cutthroat fashion industry.

Topics, including production quality control, global concerns, fabrics, and aesthetics, are covered in the curriculum that mixes fashion and business. 

The curriculum prepares students for production, design, quality assurance, merchandising, and promotion positions. Students have the option of concentrating in marketing or small business management or picking a minor in business administration.

As of 2011, Indiana University of Pennsylvania offers the following degrees:

  • B.S. Fashion Merchandising

A B.S. degree typically takes four years to complete, an M.S. degree typically takes two years, and a Ph.D. program typically takes two or more years to complete.

The best businesses and merchants frequently hire students who want to complete internships. Opportunities to study abroad are also available. Students can expand their professional networks by joining clubs like the IUP Sew Club or the IUP Fashion Association.

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4. Made Institute 

They are the top independent fashion design and sewing program in Philadelphia. Your path to earning a designer development diploma.

Students in this 12- or 18-month program get a great education at a price and pace that’s convenient for them. They assist budding designers and manufacturers create and launch their own lovely fashion lines through small class sizes, practical instruction, and one-on-one mentoring.

They strive to offer a schedule that fits your life, with fall and spring start dates.

What You’ll Gain:

  • Ways for making clothes that range from casual to sophisticated.
  • approaches for fashion illustration ranging from novice to expert.
  • a comprehensive picture of the fashion industry today.
  • Adobe Creative Suite for beginners to start designing unique pictures for your brand. Flyers, business cards, and photo editing
  • Advanced commercial sewing methods for knitwear, skirts, shirts, and jeans
  • To advance your creations, develop your patterns.
  • Make a portfolio that effectively communicates your ideas and your sense of style professionally.
  • Use Adobe Illustrator to design your prints and produce expert technical drawings.
  • Take design studio classes to develop your collection and prepare for the runway.
  • Get links to sample makers, pattern makers, and small batch manufacturers to start product production and development.
  • Through guest lectures from business owners, designers, and mentors in the fashion industry, you can learn how to handle the business of fashion.
  • Create your online presence (website, business cards, social network accounts, etc.) and exhibit your capsule collection at our runway event.

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5. Mercyhurst University

This all-encompassing program equips students with the skills they need to be successful in every area of the fashion industry, from buying to presenting to even creating their clothing brand.

That’s because you’ll have many possibilities to obtain practical, hands-on experience and a robust curriculum designed to provide you with an in-depth understanding of the fashion business, from creation to marketing. 

Also, they emphasize the need for their students to have practical experience in the field before graduation through both required and optional opportunities, such as internships, the development of professional portfolios, membership in the Mercyhurst Fashion Club, experiencing fashion from “Fashion Capitals” around the world, or networking with fashion professionals.

Through Mercyhurst’s Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) Visiting Student Program, you’ll also have the chance to study and live in New York City. You can earn a Mercyhurst bachelor’s degree plus an associate degree by attending this prestigious university during your junior or senior year.

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6. Philadelphia University

Philadelphia University’s Fashion Industry curriculum integrates studies in textiles and clothing with lessons in management, finance, and other business topics. Students acquire experience using relevant computer programs while learning about the design and production of clothing, from selecting the fiber to the finished article.

As of 2011, Philadelphia University offers the following degrees:

  • B.S. Fashion Industry
  • B.S. Fashion Design
  • B.S. Fashion Merchandising

A B.S. degree typically takes four years to complete, an M.S. degree typically takes two years, and a Ph.D. program typically takes two or more years to complete.

Additionally, top apparel brands and stores usually hire students who want to complete internships. All throughout the world, including Shanghai, London, Milan, and Hong Kong, there are options to study abroad.

Through vibrant student organizations like Fashion Industry Association and FAME, as well as the yearly fashion show, students can also make connections in the professional world.

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7. The Art Institute of Philadelphia

The Art Institute of Philadelphia’s Fashion Design program strongly emphasizes giving students a well-rounded education in fashion to gain knowledge and abilities in business, design, fashion, technology, and marketing. Students of fashion design strike a balance between technical knowledge and artistic growth. 

Also, students studying fashion marketing concentrate on computer science, high-level business, and sales marketing.

Students graduate from the program with the ability to succeed in various entry-level jobs in the field.

As of 2011, The Art Institute of Philadelphia offers the following degrees:

  • A.S., B.S, Fashion Design
  • A.S., B.S, Fashion Marketing
  • A.S. Visual Merchandising

A B.S. degree typically takes four years to complete, an M.S. degree typically takes two years, and a Ph.D. program typically takes two or more years to complete.

Also, students are required to do an internship during which they will acquire practical experience and have the opportunity to establish relationships and strengthen their professional communication skills.

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8. Thomas Jefferson University

Jefferson’s Fashion Design program trains highly qualified students to shape the direction of the fashion industry.

Students can study with instructors who are also professionals in the business at one of the top fashion schools in the world, consistently ranked by Fashionista and Business of Fashion. 

Equally, students can gain international experience and cross-cultural perspectives on design through study abroad and short-course choices in Italy and London. At the same time, a quick trip to New York City offers many chances.

Employers frequently commend graduates for their technical and CAD skills, and program alumni are well-known in all facets and levels of the fashion business.  

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9. Moore College of Art & Design

Students are prepared for careers in art and design at Moore College of Art & Design. Moore is the first and only undergraduate women’s visual arts college in the country. It was established in 1848.

The career-focused environment at the College and the professionally engaged professors create a vibrant community in the center of Philadelphia’s cultural district, where top-tier museums ring. 

The college provides four coed graduate programs and 10 bachelors of fine arts degrees for women. In addition to offering specialized leadership programs at the undergraduate level, Moore is the only institution of higher learning in the country that offers paid internships to all BFA students in art and design. 

Consequently, The College offers a wide range of benefits in the arts through The Galleries at Moore, Continuing Education Certificate Programs, the renowned Young Artists Workshop, The Art Shop, and Sculpture Park.

The College also maintains www.MooreWomenArtists.org, a website for all female visual artists, in addition to its main website.

The Moore College of Art & Design is the ideal location for those interested in fashion design and eager to express their creativity on the catwalk. You will be prepared for a profession through our fashion design BFA program, which College Magazine lists as one of the best in the country.

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10. Harcum College

Associate degrees are available in fashion design, fashion merchandising, photography, graphic design, and interior design at Harcum College.

Harcum College, based in lovely Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, trains students for professional careers in design with an emphasis on problem-solving, imaginative thinking, and community service.

Furthermore, one thing Harcum takes pleasure in is encouraging its kids to think creatively.

You will graduate from this program ready to research current trends, sketch designs, choose materials, and contribute significantly to the fashion industry’s production and creative sides. 

You will be prepared for a job in the dynamic fashion sector by taking computer-aided design courses, technical requirements, and 3D virtual prototyping. Many in-person and online classes are available, so you can start preparing for the future immediately.

Also, with a degree in fashion design, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge and abilities you need to land a job in the fashion industry and/or transfer to a four-year program. These abilities include designing, drawing, computer, marketing, and apparel construction.

For the strongest basis in both design and business, fashion design majors pursue foundational courses in art and design and studies in digital marketing, visual merchandising, and retail management. You’ll collaborate with experts in the field, learn to solve issues quickly and develop a whole collection using your original designs.

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Also read- Best Fashion Schools in New York City

What are the Fashion Schools in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania?

List of Philadelphia fashion schools offering degree programs in fashion design, fashion marketing, fashion merchandising, and more.

  • Made Institute
  • Moore College of Art & Design
  • Drexel University
  • Philadelphia University
  • The Art Institute of Philadelphia

What are the Fashion Schools in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania?

List of Pittsburgh fashion schools offering degree programs in fashion design, fashion marketing, fashion merchandising, and more.

  • Kaplan Career Institute-Pittsburgh
  • The Art Institute of Pittsburgh

What are the Fashion Design Schools in Pennsylvania?

The fashion industry is always evolving and changing. A degree in fashion design from a Pennsylvania university is required to launch a career in the field.

There are 11 schools in Pennsylvania, including colleges, universities, and community colleges, offer fashion design programs. In addition to offering associate’s and bachelor’s degrees, seven colleges now provide graduate-level fashion design curricula.

  • Albright College
  • Cheyney University of Pennsylvania
  • Drexel University
  • Lehigh Carbon Community College
  • Marywood University

What are Fashion Merchandising Schools in Pennsylvania?

Attending a Pennsylvania school is the first step toward beginning a career in fashion merchandising. These courses can equip you with the skills necessary for various fashion merchandiser jobs, including creating displays, promoting clothing to shops, and choosing designer items.

You must take several business and fashion courses during your program, in addition to the general education requirements and marketing classes. Merchandise Management Strategies, Sustainability in Fashion, Consumer Textiles, and Consumer Behavior are some classes you might need to attend.

Before you can graduate from some Pennsylvania colleges, you must do an internship. Working with a nearby fashion merchandiser for a few hours each week is typically required. This experience can help you stand out from other candidates when you start your job search.

  • Immaculata University
  • Indiana University of Pennsylvania-Main Campus
  • Pace Institute
  • The Art Institute of Philadelphia
  • Mercyhurst University


Making clothing is easier than you may imagine. If you learn the abilities, you’ll go to your destination swiftly.

Investing a month or two more on something that will benefit them for the rest of their lives is not a terrible investment for people who are in a rush to not only finish their studies but to fulfill chores as quickly as possible and begin making money.

Deciding to pursue a career in fashion design is a wise move. To understand the craft of fashion design and grasp the principles, you must attend fashion colleges in Pennsylvania or continue your education elsewhere.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is there any age limit for fashion designing in Pennsylvania?

No, there is no age limit.

How long does it take to study fashion in Pennsylvania?

It takes about four years.

Is fashion design school in Pennsylvania worth it?

Yes, it is.

Is it difficult to study fashion design in Pennsylvania?

Fashion design is not an easy course to study.


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