Kent Fashion School launches new grad program

Kent State Fashion School launches new grad program

Kent State University’s School of Fashion Design and Merchandising is now offering a new graduate program: Master of Fashion Industry Studies. The program is the first of its kind in the academic world.

The goal of the Master of Fashion Industry Studies - a degree several years in the making - is to prepare graduates with the ability to solve complex fashion industry issues through research. 

“Our school is seeking to be a front-runner in education for the fashion industry,” Catherine Leslie, Ph.D., graduate studies coordinator of Kent State’s Fashion School, said in a statement. “Rather than dividing knowledge and students into ‘art’ or ‘business’ as is the trend in many undergraduate and graduate programs in our field, the Master of Fashion Industry Studies seeks to make connections between theory and practice, developing an understanding of the industry in a holistic manner.”

This is the first semester the program has been offered, and eight students are currently enrolled, a number expected to increase with time.

“Next year, we expect to have at least 20 students involved in the program and continue to grow from there,” Dr. Leslie said in a statement. “We strive to be a front-runner and are confident that by having our graduate coursework infused with real-world investigations into critical issues facing the industry, we will prepare future leaders. We welcome students with degrees from all areas, as this strengthens and expands the interdisciplinary nature of graduate fashion education.”

More information about the program can be found at


Photo courtesy of Kent State University. Catherine Leslie, Ph.D. (pictured far right), graduate studies coordinator of Kent State University’s Fashion School, stands with graduate students of the 2018-19 Master of Fashion Industry Studies cohort.

Monday, November 12, 2018