CAREER CORNER—Does Where You Go To School Matter?

Much like our quest for a pair of jeans, delicious cookie and suitable mate, the search for the “perfect” school is a challenge. Do you choose a large state university or small liberal arts college? What about fashion and design schools? Much like choosing distressed over dark, the choice of where you go to school is highly personal.

This decision is difficult for any college-bound kiddo—but it is especially confusing for those interested in going into the fashion industry. So often there is a misconception that you have to go to school in a major city or a design school to get your foot in the door. While we aren’t here to debate the merits of each type of school or make the decision on where you should attend for you, we are here to debunk the rumor of where you going to school making or breaking your future career.

The reality is that where you go to school matters, but only a little bit. You know what really matters? YOU! If you are dedicated, smart, open, creative, hardworking, passionate and willing to hustle (like really hustle), that will speak way more to your ability to have a successful career and land a j-o-b than the school listed on your resume.

To illustrate our point, check out where some of our favorite fashion influencers went to school. Some may just surprise you!

Whitney Port, TV Personality, Designer and Author

School: University of Southern California

Whitney Port

Aimee Song, Fashion and Interior Design Blogger

School: Academy of Art University of San Francisco

Aimee Song

Sophia Amoruso, Founder of NASTY GAL

School: Community College Drop Out

Sophia Amoruso

Tory Burch, Fashion Designer and Businesswoman

School: University of Pennsylvania

Tory Burch

Amy Astley, Editor-in-Chief of Teen Vogue

School: Michigan State University

Amy Astley

Stacey Bendet, CEO and Creative Director of Alice + Olivia

School: University of Pennsylvania

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Scott Schuman, Founder/Blogger/Photographer of The Satorialist

School: Indiana University


Leandra Medine, Founder and Author of The Man Repeller

School: The New School, Parsons

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Diane von Fürstenberg, Fashion Designer and Chairman of the CFDA

School: University of Geneva

Aya Kanai, Executive Fashion Director of Cosmopolitan Magazine and Seventeen

School: Oberlin Collge

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Rachel Zoe, Stylist, Designer and Author

School: The George Washington University

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Hillary Kerr, Co-Founder of Clique Media (,,

School: University of Southern California

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Giuliana Rancic, Fashion Influencer and TV Personality

School: American University

giuliana rancic

Steve Madden, Namesake Designer and Businessman

School: University of Miami


Natalie Massenet, CEO and Founder of Net-A-Porter

School: University of California, Los Angeles

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Vera Wang, Designer and Businesswoman

School: Sarah Lawrence College

Vera Wang

Annie Leibovitz, Photographer

School: San Francisco Art Institute