How Much Does Fashion Design School Cost?

Models who strut in the runways of the fashion capitals of the world wouldn’t be able to do so if it weren’t for the creativity and skill of fashion designers. The latter are ultimately the brains that are responsible for coming up with the trend-setting apparel, footwear and accessories that fashion models showcase during fashion shows. Fashion designers work in fashion houses large and small and those who have already earned a name for themselves run their own labels and get to dress up celebrities and public figures. They also have the chance to have their designs featured in fashion magazines and websites as well as television shows.

If you have a flair for designing and creating different types of garments—from blouses to dresses to pants to gowns—then you are most likely interested in this career. Knowing how to sketch, however, won’t be enough. There are a lot of technical aspects that you need to learn about the field and only by going to fashion design school will you get the necessary knowledge and training that will make you even more competent and creative. Besides, going to fashion design school gives you the opportunity to start forming your portfolio—something that prospective employers will ask for when you start looking for job opportunities. Since a bachelor’s degree in fashion design takes around four years to complete, the cost of tuition and other fees, books and supplies as well as that of housing and food need to be prepared for.

A bachelor’s degree in fashion design can cost around $36,000 annually on the average, although the range can vary widely from $13,000 to around $60,000 a year. These estimates include the cost of tuition and other fees, books and supplies as well as that of room and board. Public schools cost substantially lower compared to private schools especially for in-state students who get to enjoy tuition discounts. Private schools, on the other hand, charge the same fees to all students no matter which state they come from.

Another cost-effective way of obtaining your fashion design degree is to look for an online school. Although the cost of tuition and other fees may not be substantially different, what makes an online program financially cost-effective is that it allows you to hold a fulltime job while you’re working towards your degree. Getting a degree online also allows you to save on housing and food costs because you can always negotiate with your parents for you to stay at home while you’re still in college.

To give you an example of the cost an online fashion degree, let’s look at the some programs. At the Academy of Art University, the bachelor of fine arts in fashion degree which can be taken online costs $810 per unit. One class is comprised of three units. According to their website, the estimated undergraduate expenses for a fulltime student are $22,086 annually. This covers tuition, fees, course materials or supplies. At the Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design in Colorado, the bachelor of fine arts in fashion design can also be completed online. The cost per credit hour is $464 so a student needs about $57,000 to finish the program.

Keep in mind that financial aid can further lower the cost of tuition and other fees for online fashion degree programs. You can apply for grants and scholarships to help bring down your out-of-the-pocket expenses. If you still need additional funds to help finance your degree, you can also apply for student loans. However, see to it that you don’t rely solely on student loans because these will have to be paid later on.

Career Spotlight: Fashion Designer

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