Students major in either apparel design or apparel merchandising. Within apparel design, students choose among three concentrations depending on their interests. For maximum career flexibility, students can major in both design and merchandising if they choose. Both disciplines are also available as minors. 

The apparel design and merchandising department at Dominican prepares students for careers in all aspects of the fashion and retail industries, including design, merchandising, sales, management and more.

Dominican’s apparel program combines several elements to create well-rounded apparel experts:

  • Liberal arts focus – As part of Dominican’s Rosary College of Arts and Sciences, apparel students complete the core curriculum, unlike at some fashion-only schools, whose focus is purely technical.
  • Internship – Apparel students must complete at least one internship to graduate.
  • Portfolio – To graduate, apparel students create a comprehensive portfolio documenting their artistic and intellectual growth through their entire college career.
  • Fashion show – All apparel design students each year must display their original designs in the department’s annual fashion show. Senior Collections are the highlight.
  • Foreign Study – Study abroad is strongly recommended for all apparel students. Dominican offers special apparel student-only options in Paris and Milan.

Apparel Design

At Dominican, apparel design majors choose from among three concentrations. Most of the basic course requirements are common to all concentrations. Students often choose their concentration based on their educational goals and what they want to do after graduation. 

Concentration in Fashion Development 
Coursework in the concentration in fashion development emphasizes product development and the fashion industry. 

Concentration in Surface Design 
Coursework in the concentration in surface design focuses on textile techniques, cultural artisanship and craftsmanship. 

Concentration in Dress and Textile Studies 
This concentration offers ideal preparation for students who wish to emphasize theatrical costuming and the historical and cultural aspects of dress. 

Apparel Merchandising

This major often appeals to the student who enjoys the business side of the apparel industry. As well as courses in retail buying, visual display, and other merchandising courses, students take coursework in business administration, economics and art. 

Apparel merchandising students often minor in business or communications. 

Apparel Minors

Students can choose to minor in either apparel design or apparel merchandising. Each minor requires six courses, three of which must be completed at Dominican. 

Apparel design minors complete six designated apparel design and merchandising courses. This course sequence provides a solid overview of apparel structure and design. 

Apparel merchandising minors complete four apparel design and merchandising courses, plus two designated business administration courses and one economics course. 

Minor options for apparel majors 
At Dominican, we pride ourselves on graduating well-rounded individuals. Our students are encouraged to tailor their studies to their interests. For many, that means choosing a minor that complements their major work. 

Apparel design students often minor in theatre arts so they can explore costume design and creation. Earning an art minor is another popular option that allows students to enhance their drawing skills and general art knowledge. Students who plan to spend time in the fashion capitals of Europe may find a foreign language minor helpful. 

Many apparel merchandising students decide to minor in business to help them gain a robust understanding of the business side of fashion and retail. A communicatoins minor—most likely journalism or corporate communication—also gives apparel merchandising students a leg up as they begin their careers by honing their business knowledge and ability to communicate clearly and precisely.