Iowa State ranked as top fashion school

Models walk down the runway showcasing student designs at Iowa State’s 2018 Fashion Show.

, Livhanson95 just recently ranked Iowa State as one of the top fashion schools in the nation, again.

Here are the statistics:

According to, Iowa State is ranked as No. 2 in the nation overall for their fashion merchandising program, up three spots from their 2017 ranking of No. 5. They were ranked as No. 2 out of the top 25 fashion public schools for their fashion merchandising program. They were ranked No. 1 in the Midwest for their fashion merchandising program.

“Obviously it makes us really happy, and we want it to stay that way,” said Ann Thye, apparel, merchandising and design academic advisor and internship coordinator. “A lot of times it is a big surprise to people in Iowa. I mean, there will be a student thinking about majoring in fashion and of course they immediately think about FIT or something like that. Then when they go to look it up and realize that here Iowa State is in the top 10 or ranked even higher sometimes, they’re kind of like. ‘Oh my gosh.’ It’s kind of hard for them to believe.” ranked Iowa State as No. 10 out of the top 50 ranked fashion schools in the U.S., down one ranking from the site’s ranking in 2017 with Iowa State as No. 9 in the U.S. Iowa State was ranked at No. 4 out of the top public schools in the nation for design and No. 3 for fashion design in the midwest.

The information they compiled could be on the right track–but the truth is, it’s hard to compare schools based on abstract features and not scientific with numbers.

“We’re happy that somebody started doing something like that,” Thye said. “ and do it but you know it’s hard that kind of thing. You see it all the time in papers but how do they really come up with it? We don’t necessarily know how scientific it really is but its done all the time so we’ll take it.” said that they base their findings off of factors such as, “the schools’ admission data, graduation success, reputation and an extensive proprietary survey conducted with school & industry stakeholders.”

According to Thye, did send the AMD department a survey for them to fill out.

“So they do work with us too, so some of it is how we or our competitors report as well,” Thye said. “They’re wanting to know, ‘who are some notable alumni that have graduated and what do they do?’ or ‘what companies commonly recruit your students?’ That kind of thing. That’s information that we have to supply them. That’s why when we get a request for these surveys, we take them pretty seriously.”

Other things that the site takes into consideration is the apparel merchandising and design major’s fashion magazine Trend Magazine, the Textiles and Clothing Museum, Mary Alice Anderson Reinhart Gallery and the Fashion Show. The site really highlights the fashion show mentioning how it is one of the largest student-run fashion shows in the nation.

“In 2018, the show attracted over 2,500 guests, who viewed over 150 student designed garments. It was awarded the 2018 Outstanding Event of the Year award,” said.

The site also really focuses on where  Iowa State students get internships and where they get jobs after they graduate.

“Students also have access to the interactive Textiles and Clothing Museum and possible internship opportunities at places such as Anna Sui, Rag & Bone, Fossil Group, Kohl’s, Abercrombie & Fitch, Elie Tahari, Nordstrom, Banana Republic, and BCBG,” said of Iowa State.

Iowa State’s apparel, merchandising and design faculty is another factor that the site considers, as well as, the fact that Iowa State is one of the few schools that offers up to a PhD level in apparel, merchandising and design.

“I think another part of it that they at least put into consideration is that our faculty are really highly regarded as far as their research and involvement in the academics part of it across the United States,” Thye said. “So our faculty, they always come out on top as far as most research articles written and their involvement,”

Since hearing of these rankings, Thye said that they have been getting more out of state students to join the apparel design program.

“It definitely is a positive for us, and when we have people coming visits and things, they definitely mention it and we’ve been getting more students from out of state that might not have considered us in the past,” Thye said. “Like, we’ll get someone from like Colorado and they’re considering us and it’s mainly because they have looked it up online.”

Overall it makes the department happy to hear of this ranking. It also is a surprising plus for incoming Iowa State students from Iowa and surrounding states as well.

You can find the article here: