Fashion/Apparel Design
Fashion/Apparel Design
Associate in Applied Science Degree in Visual Arts (A.A.S.)

The Fashion/Apparel Design A.A.S. degree prepares students for entry into the dynamic world of fashion or for further study at a four-year institution. The tri-state metro area of New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania is one of the nation’s largest regions for the fashion/apparel industry, where skilled students can seek opportunities as assistant fashion designers, stylists, visual display artists, product and merchandise managers, and fashion illustrators.

The Fashion/Apparel Design program is highly interdisciplinary, providing a strong foundation in art, design, and technical studies while developing a perspective on both the creative and business aspects of the industry. The program also prepares students for advanced study at four-year colleges by paralleling the first two years of course requirements at several institutions. While the design sequence emphasizes core creative art skills, technical training focuses on computer applications used in the industry and sewing labs structured to mirror those of actual fashion/ apparel studios.

In addition to coursework, students focus on portfolio development throughout the program, and finalize a professional product in both hard copy and digital format in a capstone course. Students take advantage of field studies at design and/or production houses and have an opportunity to showcase their work in an annual fashion show.

The program may be pursued full-time or part-time. Some courses may only be offered during the day.

  • Develop foundation art skills to apply to fashion/apparel design development;
  • Develop and present ideas effectively in both written and oral formats;
  • Understand current trends in the fashion industry from a global perspective;
  • Demonstrate knowledge of a wide range of textiles and manufacturing processes;
  • Use specialized computer applications to create fashion/apparel design elements;
  • Drape fabrics on a dress form in preparation for pattern-making and sewing;
  • Develop sewing skills/techniques to produce finished garments;
  • Design and produce individual fashion and apparel pieces;
  • Understand the basic principles of merchandising;
  • Create a portfolio for use in transferring or gaining employment.

Fashion Merchandising degree program

2023-2024 Academic Year
 earlier / Archive
CIP 500407

The course sequence below represents a recommended example of how this degree program can be completed in two years, presuming a Fall Term start and satisfaction of all Developmental Studies (foundation courses) requirements and prerequisites. Actual approaches toward completion depend on each student's anticipated transfer institution, career objectives, or other individual circumstances.

Students are encouraged to meet regularly with an academic advisor or Success Coach to consider options, establish plans, and monitor progress.

Code Course (lecture/lab hours) Credits
To Do This Semester
ART 102 Basic Drawing (1/4) 3

✔ Meet with your faculty advisor to complete an academic plan. Make sure you are aware of any course prerequisites you may need to take, and how long it will take to complete your degree.

✔ Use your online tools: Check your MercerMail daily, utilize features of Office 365, and get to know Student Planning.

✔ Take advantage of Learning Centers or Online Tutoring to support your studies and assignments.

ART 105 Two-Dimensional Design (1/4) 3
ENG 101 English Composition I (3/0) 3
FAS 105 Fashion: The Global Marketplace (3/0) 3
MAT  — Mathematics elective
  • MAT 120 or 125 recommended. Select in consultation with an academic advisor.

ART 104 Life Drawing (1/4) 3

✔ Transitioning to college can be challenging. Meet with your Success Coach for guidance and support.

✔ Apply for financial aid by May 1.

✔ Contact professors with questions and use their office hours to develop a connection. Talk with them to get the inside scoop on how your profession works.

✔ Be sure to visit the Career Services office to explore jobs, internships, and career information and get help with your resume and other career tools.

✔ Apply for Continuing Student scholarships at

CMN 111 Speech: Human Communication (3/0)  
  OR 3
CMN 112 Public Speaking (3/0)  
FAS 120 Introduction to Fashion Industries (1/4) 3
FAS 130 Introduction to Textiles for Fashion (3/0) 3
FAS 150 Technical Skills for Apparel Production I (1/4)

ART 122 History of Art II (3/0)  

✔ Keep in contact with each professor and your faculty advisor. Make sure you are on track to graduate on time.

✔ Work with Career Services to formulate plans for after you've earned this degree.

✔ Develop team and leadership skills by getting involved in activities and clubs.

✔ Apply for Continuing Student scholarships at

✔ Manage your stress! Take advantage of the MCCC pool, Fitness Center, free yoga and Zumba. Reach out for counseling or other support if you need it. Your Success Coach can connect you with resources.

  OR 3
ART 125 Topics in Contemporary Art (3/0)  
ENG 102 English Composition II (3/0) 3
FAS 110 Introduction to Fashion Drawing (1/4) 3
FAS 140 Fashion Technology (1/4) 3
FAS 250 Technical Skills for Apparel Production II (1/4)

ART 106 Three-Dimensional Design (1/4) 3

✔ Get ready to start your career! Begin the job application process.

✔ Discuss your career plans with your faculty advisor. S/he can help you transition successfully.

FAS 205 Fashion Visual Merchandising and Display (3/0)  
  OR 3
FAS 220 History of Costume Design (3/0)  
FAS 260 Fashion Industries Capstone and Portfolio (1/4) 3
HIS 113 World History Since 1500 (3/0) 3
  —    — Science OR Technology general education elective
  • DMA 144 recommended.