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You are lucky to be able to choose from a variety of schools. How to choose? Here is an easy to follow, step-by-step guide to help you.

January/March is the time many students plan for entry into a post-secondary school. In honor of the excellent Fashion Design programs we have locally, here is a basic overview of five schools located in Vancouver and one in the Fraser Valley. Please note that the schools have provided all information included and it is up to the individual to decide which school best suits his or her needs.
To see all the schools
- please scroll to the right ------->

Vancouver Community College

250 W. Pender Street, Vancouver, BC
(604) 443-8387 or (604) 443-8484

Programs Offered:
2-year full-time Fashion Arts Diploma
2-year part-time/evening Fashion Arts Certificate
1-year part-time /evening Fashion Merchandising Associate Certificate
Continuous intake non-credit Fashion Arts Specialty Courses

Enrollment Deadlines and Program Start Dates:
Fashion Arts Diploma application deadline: May 30th; start date: September
Fashion Arts Certificate application deadline: February 15th for April start; May 30th for
September start
Fashion Merchandising Associate Certificate: no application required. Start dates January,
April and September

Entrance requirements:
Fashion Arts Diploma: Grade 12 or equivalent (waived if mature student); English 12 with a "B" grade or higher or equivalent; submission of completed application form; 2 or more letters of reference and successful portfolio assessment and interview
Fashion Arts Certificate: grade 12 or equivalent (waived if mature student); working knowledge of the English language and the ability to speak, read and write clearly and correctly, submission of completed application form and successful portfolio assessment and interview
Fashion Merchandising Associate Certificate program: ability to speak, read and write English clearly and correctly.

Focus of school and/or school statement:
Our programs are known for developing the skills one would need for industry employment AND to successfully launch their own collections should graduates choose to seek self-employment. We have a reputation for fostering individual creativity and teaching excellent technical skills.

Student-Teacher ratio: Maximum 22:1

Past Graduates: Alex Benekritis - Ralph Lauren, Farrah Iny - Oscar De la Renta,
Melissa McMahon - Lotus Yogawear

For More Information: Judy Ho, Program Coordinator, or 604-443-8387

Kwantlen University College

8771 Lansdowne Road, Richmond, BC
(604) 599-2551

Programs Offered:
4-Year Bachelor of Applied Design in Fashion Design & Technology
2-Year Diploma in Fashion Design & Technology
1-Year Fashion Marketing Certificate

Enrollment Deadlines and Program Start Dates:
Applications accepted from November to March 31, program start date September
Orientation and portfolio review sessions take place the last week of April

Entrance requirements:
Minimum B grade in English 12 or equivalent
Attendance at an Orientation & Portfolio Review Session
Portfolio to Include: Sewing Skills, Design and Drawing Skills, Computer Skills, Basic Math,
Awareness of the Fashion Profession and Life Experiences
See and download the Information Package for details.

Focus of school and/or school statement:
Kwantlen's 4-Year Bachelor of Applied Design in Fashion Design and Technology program prepares students for careers in the global apparel economy in fashion design, production, marketing and computer technology. This dynamic program features comprehensive industry-based education and training using leading-edge technology; class projects facilitated by prominent apparel companies such as MEC and lululemon; and an extensive internship that results in employment.

Student-Teacher ratio: 22:1

Past Graduates: Edina Bartell: Production Manager, Global Collective Design Inc. - Arson/Orb labels, Tanya Maglio: Designer, lululemon athletica, Jolie Chan - Jolie Couture

For more information: Mary Boni at or 604-599-2551
Information Sessions held twice yearly in mid-October and mid-February


Blanche Macdonald Centre

Downtown Campus - Fashion Design, Fashion Merchandising and Hairstyling
460 Robson Street, Vancouver, BC (604) 685-0337
City Square Campus - Make-up and Esthetics/Spa Therapy
100 - 555 West 12th Avenue, Vancouver, BC (604) 685-0347

Programs Offered:
Fashion Merchandising - 1-Year Diploma Program (4 Semesters)
Fashion Design - 1-Year Diploma Program (4 Semesters)

Enrollment Deadlines and Program Start Dates:
Blanche Macdonald has an ongoing intake system and offers numerous start dates throughout the year.

Entrance Requirements:
Must be 19 years of age or have graduated from High School.
Must have good written and verbal English skills.
Must have an interest in the fashion and apparel industries.
Must have basic or better sewing skills (Design students only)

Focus of School and/or School Statement:
Established since 1960, the Blanche Macdonald Centre ahs distinguished itself as a leader in the field of fashion education. The college is well known for its commitment to students, exceptional instructors, academic excellence and outstanding graduate achievements. The Fashion Merchandising and Design programs are continually updated to reflect industry needs. The focus is on both practical and academic courses involving all aspects of fashion and is designed to give a comprehensive overview of the industry. Our purpose is to provide quality education that is industry relevant within a positive and creative learning environment.

Student-Teacher Ratio: Maximum class size is 24 in Fashion Merchandising and 20 in Fashion Design. In lab courses the ratio is 10:1.

Past Graduates: Dace Moore (designer/owner of Dace Design), Joyce Ma (designer/owner of Tension Clothing) and Shannon Wilson (designer for Lululemon).

For More Information: Contact an Admissions Director by e-mail at or visit the website at


The Art Institute of Vancouver

700 - 1090 West Georgia Street, Vancouver, BC
1 (866) 717-8080 or (604) 683-9200

Programs Offered:
2-Year Fashion Design and Merchandising Diploma
2-Year Fashion Marketing and Management Diploma

Enrollment Deadlines and Program Start Dates:
We have quarter start dates of January, April, July and September.
Enrollment is based on continuing process.

Entrance Requirements:
Entrance requirements include: interview, essay, transcripts and a portfolio. For those students who do not have a portfolio, a foundation quarter is available.

Focus of School and/or School Statement:
The Art Institute of Vancouver is one of The Art Institutes (, a system of over 35 education institutions located throughout North America, providing an important source of design, media arts, fashion and culinary arts professionals. We provide exceptional learning-centered, industry driven education that prepares our graduates for entry-level positions in their chosen career. There is a pro-active team environment that promotes open and effective communication, mutual respect, trust and integrity.

Student-Teacher Ratio: The student-teacher ratio varies by program and class. Specialized classes will typically have a smaller class size.

Past Graduates: Former grads working with Holt Renfrew, Quantum Apparel, and Off The Wall.

For More Information:
Please contact an Assistant Director of Admissions at 1 (866) 717-8080.


LaSalle College Vancouver

200 - 889 West Pender Street, Vancouver, BC
(604) 683-2006

Program Offered:
Fashion Design Diploma - 1.5 Years (75 weeks)
Jewellery Design Diploma- 1 Year (45 Weeks)
Fashion Marketing Diploma, On-line - 16 months, 4 semesters

Enrollment Deadlines and Program Start Dates:
Enrollment deadlines are one week before program start dates, provided classes are not full.
Program start dates for 2008 are-
Fashion Design and Jewellery Design: January 14th, May 12th and September 8th
Fashion Marketing On-line: January 21st, May 14th, and September 14th.

Entrance Requirements:
19 years of age or High School Graduate.
Working knowledge of the English Language.
A sincere interest in Design.
An interview with the Program Advisor.

Focus of School and/or School Statement:
LaSalle provides excellence in training and teaches students the skills and techniques required in today's fashion industry. Our Fashion program focuses on developing the artistic and design abilities of each student and assisting the students to express their creative talent through fashion design. We provide a supportive learning environment with industry-experienced instructors.

Student-Teacher Ratio: 5-8 students to 1 instructor. Our small class sizes enhance the student's learning opportunities and provide extensive student/instructor interaction.

Past Graduates: Working at Lotus Wear Designs, Please Mum and Westbeach.

For More Information: Please phone the school at (604) 683-2006 or by e-mail at


University College of the Fraser Valley

3844 King Rd., Abbotsford, BC 604-504-7441 Toll-Free (Canada) 1-888-504-7441

Program Offered:
2 Year Fashion Design Diploma
Fashion Minor (housed within the 4 year BFA) in development

Enrollment deadlines and program start dates:
Applications accepted beginning October first on an annual basis for a September first intake the following year. Interviews & portfolio reviews are scheduled in early spring.

Entrance Requirements:
1. High school diploma or mature student (19 years or older).
2. Orientation session and personal interview with the faculty, at which time your strengths and weaknesses are assessed. The personal interview will consider:
a. Level of creativity: a portfolio of work containing 15-20 original pieces. Work should be recent and varied in nature: Art/Fine artwork, Craft work and Applied Art.
b. Technical skills: minimum of four different garments demonstrating a range of techniques and several mechanical drawings (buildings, industrial, garments, etc.).
c. Communication skills: you will be required to write a brief paragraph.
d. Math skills: a short math test will be administered at the same time, no calculators allowed.
e. Basic computer skills

Student-Teacher Ratio: 20:1

Focus of school and/or school statement:
The program is designed to develop and refine your skills and talent, covering all basic elements necessary to carry a marketable design from the original idea to the finished garment. Creativity and technical skills are stressed. The curriculum accommodates a strong textile component and allows the opportunity for part-time studies for those wishing to interrupt their learning experiences or acquire additional knowledge in specific areas.

Past Graduates: Employed at Arc'teryx, Alpine Joe and Sugoi.

For More Information: Paula Funk (BFA Program Advisor)
Or Vicki Bolan (Department Assistant)
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