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The Value of a Fashion Internship

Written by FS StaffSeptember 28, 2015

There is no better way to learn than by doing. For this reason alone, a fashion internship is one of the most valuable components of a fashion design program. Other benefits of fashion  internships include the opportunity to travel overseas to fashion capitals such as Paris, London and Milan, which allows students to gain the global experience many fashion employers are looking for, the opportunity to build your resume (an internship counts as professional experience), the opportunity to network, and the possibility of employment at the conclusion of the internship. In the competitive world of fashion, these benefits will place you ahead of the pack. In fact, today’s employers favor designers that have completed one or even multiple internships. 

Internship Schedules

With the rising costs of tuition, housing and fees, having to work a part- or full-time job is a reality for many students. These students may feel that adding an internship to an already tight schedule is next to impossible. Fortunately, most internships are very flexible. Some may be completed during the summer months when school is out and others may be completed during the semester with day, evening and/or weekend hours. Some internships may require a two to three day commitment each week, while others may require just a few days a month in-house, and the rest of the time can be spent working from home. Most participating employers are more than willing to work around students’ schedules, so finding an internship to match yours should be fairly easy.

Did You Know.... Academy of Art University’s School of Fashion offers BFA's in Fashion, Fashion Merchandising, Textile Design, Fashion Marketing, Fashion Styling, Costume Design, and Fashion Product Development. Learn more.

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Bonus: Getting Paid

Although most internships offer college credit in lieu of a salary, it is possible to find a paid internship. Anthropologie, Express, POPSUGAR, and Nieman Marcus offer paid internships, and some small companies and start-ups, such as New York-based NV Fashion Group, are willing to offer some form of compensation for interns. To locate paid internships, work with your school’s career center or check websites such as FastWeb, Indeed, and At the time this article was published, listed 613 paid fashion internships across the U.S.