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13 Great Fashion Internships and Programs for High School Students

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

13 Great Fashion Internships and Programs for High School Students

In the dynamic world of fashion, finding the right opportunity to gain firsthand experience can be a game-changer for young enthusiasts. Fashion internships and programs for high school students are rich with possibilities, offering experiences from design to public relations.

These internships provide a window into the operational heart of the fashion industry but also offer a platform for students to apply their creativity, learn new skills, and build a network of professional contacts.

Whether it’s working with renowned brands, exploring the business side of fashion, or getting involved in the creative process, the right internship can provide invaluable insights and pave the way for a successful career in fashion.

1. Land’s End Summer Internships

  • Location: Not specified
  • Eligibility: Not specified
  • Important Dates: Application deadline varies
  • Internship Period: 12 weeks​​

The Land’s End Summer Internships offer a comprehensive, hands-on experience for individuals seeking to immerse themselves in the fashion industry, making it an exceptional opportunity among fashion internships and programs for high school students.

Group of students working together and talking.

This 12-week program is designed to provide interns with a thorough understanding of the inner workings of a major clothing and home decor retailer. Participants are integrated into the company’s day-to-day operations and allowed to engage in group projects that foster teamwork and innovation.

The internship emphasizes mentorship, allowing students to receive guidance from seasoned professionals in the field, which is invaluable for personal and professional development. Additionally, the program includes leadership workshops and networking events, creating avenues for interns to build connections that could benefit their future careers in fashion.

2. LIM Fashion Academy

  • Location: New York, NY
  • Eligibility: Not specified
  • Important Dates: The application deadline is June 20
  • Program Period: 3 weeks​​

LIM Fashion Academy stands out as a dynamic and enriching program that offers a deep dive into the business side of the fashion industry, distinguishing itself as a premier choice among fashion internships and programs for high school students.

Female student smiling at the camera while holding her things.

This three-week summer program at LIM College is meticulously designed to introduce participants to various topics crucial to fashion, including fashion merchandising and marketing, visual studies, fashion media, styling, event management, sustainability, and entrepreneurship.

Unlike traditional internships, LIM Fashion Academy adopts a hands-on approach, allowing students to experience the multifaceted nature of the fashion industry directly. The curriculum is crafted to impart knowledge and stimulate creativity and critical thinking among its attendees, preparing them for future careers in fashion.

3. Parsons Online Summer Intensive Studies

  • Location: Lower Manhattan, NYC
  • Eligibility: High school students
  • Important Dates: Not available
  • Program Period: 3 weeks​​

Parsons Online Summer Intensive Studies emerges as an innovative and prestigious option within the realm of fashion internships and programs for high school students, hosted by one of the top design schools globally, The New School’s Parsons School of Design.

a father helping her daughter to make recommendation letter

This three-week program is not your typical internship but an intensive study course that provides high schoolers with a unique blend of academic rigor and practical insight into various fashion-focused fields.

What sets this program apart is its ability to immerse students in the creative and vibrant world of fashion design, fashion styling, and product design, among others. Through coursework, guest speakers from the fashion industry, and virtual field trips, participants are exposed to the realities and challenges of the fashion world, equipping them with the knowledge and skills to pursue a career in this dynamic field.

4. Drexel University’s Merchandising: Re-imagining the Business of Fashion

  • Location: Philadelphia, PA
  • Eligibility: High school students who have completed their sophomore year by July and are at least 16 before the program starts.
  • Important Dates: Program dates are July 14-20, 2024
  • Program Period: 1 week​.

Drexel University’s Merchandising: Re-imagining the Business of Fashion is an exceptional program that provides an innovative educational experience, setting itself apart in fashion internships and programs for high school students.

View of students lounging in the campus.

This one-week course is ingeniously designed to introduce participants to the multifaceted world of fashion merchandising, offering a comprehensive overview of the industry’s key components. Students engage in an immersive learning environment where they explore the interconnection between design, development, merchandising, and marketing within the fashion sector.

The program is structured to shed light on the various roles within the industry, such as buyers, product developers, marketing professionals, fashion writers, and event planners, thereby offering a broad perspective on career paths available in fashion.

5. Banson NYC Fashion Summer Camp

  • Location: New York City
  • Eligibility: Students in grades 9-12
  • Important Dates: Not available
  • Program Period: 1 week​​ (Session A: June 23-28, 2024; Session B: July 14-19, 2024)

Banson NYC Fashion Summer Camp offers a one-of-a-kind immersive experience that distinguishes itself from traditional fashion internships and programs for high school students by providing a “real-life” tour of the fashion industry in New York City.

Group of students walking in the campus.

Designed specifically for students in grades 9-12, this program goes beyond the classroom, allowing participants to step directly into the heart of the fashion world. Over a week, students can visit key players in the industry, from showrooms to design studios, gaining firsthand insight into how fashion professionals operate daily.

The camp’s agenda includes educational shopping trips and visits to fashion landmarks, enabling students to see the practical side of fashion merchandising and design. Moreover, the intimate setting—with a maximum of 20 participants—ensures personalized attention and an in-depth exploration of the fashion industry.

6. Rhode Island School of Design’s Pre-College Program

  • Location: Rhode Island
  • Eligibility: Not specified
  • Important Dates: The application deadline is rolling
  • Program Period: June 29–August 3, 2024

View of students walking in the campus.

The Rhode Island School of Design’s Pre-College Program is an exceptional educational experience that stands out among high school fashion internships. This five-week residential program offers a deep dive into art and design, catering to high school students interested in exploring and expanding their creative skills before college.

Unlike a traditional internship, this program offers a comprehensive curriculum that covers a wide range of design disciplines, including fashion. Participants engage in rigorous coursework that mirrors the college-level intensity, giving them a realistic glimpse into the demands and rewards of pursuing a career in the creative industries.

The immersive nature of the program, coupled with the opportunity to live on campus, enables students to experience life as a college student, fostering independence and a sense of community among peers with similar interests.

7. Fashion Institute of Technology’s High School Summer Live Program

  • Location: FIT’s NYC Campus
  • Eligibility: Students in grades 9 through 12 as of fall 2024
  • Important Dates: Registration starts on February 28, 2024
  • Internship Period: 10 or 4 days​​

Fashion Institute of Technology signage

The Fashion Institute of Technology’s High School Summer Live Program is a premier educational initiative designed to cater to the aspirations of high school students keen on exploring the diverse facets of the fashion industry.

This program sets itself apart from typical fashion internships and programs for high school students. It offers an expansive curriculum spanning various aspects of fashion, from design and merchandising to international marketing, photography, film, and media.

Students can choose between 10-day classes or 4-day workshops during the fall, spring, or summer sessions, allowing for a tailored experience that aligns with their interests and schedules. This flexibility makes the FIT program unique, providing students with a classroom-like setting to learn directly from industry mentors and leaders in their fields of interest.

8. Abercrombie’s Freshman Forum

  • Location: Remote
  • Eligibility: 2027 High school graduate
  • Important Dates: Application deadline and Summit event dates announced in Spring 2024
  • Internship Period: 1 week during summer 2024​​

Abercrombie’s Freshman Forum is an innovative and unique initiative that offers a distinct blend of practical experience and learning opportunities, making it stand out among fashion internships and programs for high school students.

View of a woman using a laptop.

Specifically tailored for high school seniors on the cusp of their college journey, this week-long virtual event focuses on providing insights into consumer insights, data generation, and business solution development.

What makes the Freshman Forum particularly engaging is its approach to combining classroom-style training with hands-on learning experiences, thereby offering participants a comprehensive overview of the corporate retail world from the perspective of a renowned fashion brand.

Participants have the privilege of hearing directly from Abercrombie and Fitch’s leaders about their business strategies and fashion philosophies, which can significantly influence and inspire those considering a career in fashion retail.

9. Fashion Week Internships

  • Location: Various (London, New York, Milan, Paris, Madrid, Los Angeles, Shanghai)
  • Eligibility: High school, college/post-grad, recent graduates
  • Important Dates: Not specified; applications are ongoing
  • Internship Period: Varies​.

Students walking in the hallway.

Fashion Week Internships (FWI) represents an unparalleled opportunity within the realm of fashion internships and programs for high school students, offering an immersive gateway into the global fashion industry.

This program distinguishes itself by facilitating placements in some of the world’s fashion capitals, including London, New York, Milan, Paris, Madrid, Los Angeles, and Shanghai, thus providing a broad spectrum of experiences across different fashion markets.

FWI is designed to cater to diverse interests within the fashion sector, from design and merchandising to marketing and public relations. By participating in FWI, students are not just observers but become actively involved in the behind-the-scenes operations of fashion week events, designer showcases, and the day-to-day workings of fashion companies.

10. The Met High School Internship Program

  • Location: New York, New Jersey, Connecticut (for students attending school in these areas)
  • Eligibility: Rising juniors and seniors
  • Important Dates: Application deadline is on March 8, 2024, 6 pm ET (interview notification: by Monday, April 8, 2024)
  • Internship Period: 7 weeks (June 24 – August 11, 2023)​.

A woman visiting art gallery.

The Met High School Internship Program is a standout initiative among fashion internships and programs for high school students, designed to bridge the gap between academic interests in art and the practical workings of one of the world’s most renowned cultural institutions.

Located in the heart of New York, the program caters specifically to rising juniors and seniors from New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut, offering a unique blend of educational and professional experiences.

Interns can observe, assist, and be mentored by Met staff members across various departments, aligning their internship experience with their interests and career aspirations. This immersive experience provides invaluable work experience and builds a professional network within the arts and creative industries.

11. Old Navy’s Year-Round Program

  • Location: Remote or local Old Navy store
  • Eligibility: Ages 16-24
  • Important Dates: Ongoing, year-round program
  • Internship Period: Year-round, two-hour workshops from Monday-Thursday​​

Female student smiling at the camera.

Old Navy’s Year-Round Program emerges as a distinctive entry within the spectrum of fashion internships and programs for high school students, offering a unique blend of retail exposure and practical work experience. This innovative program is designed to run throughout the year, providing flexible opportunities for young individuals aged 16 to 24 keen on exploring the retail aspect of the fashion industry.

Unlike traditional internships, often limited by seasonal schedules, Old Navy’s program offers two-hour workshops from Monday to Thursday, allowing participants to engage with the fashion retail environment more consistently.

This setup accommodates high school students’ varying schedules and ensures that participants can immerse themselves in the retail world without overly burdensome commitments. The program stands out for its accessibility, as it incurs no fees, making it an inclusive option for many participants.

12. Tiffany & Co. Internships (Examples include Intern, Product Merchandising – Home & Accessories, and Intern, Retail Merchandising – Home & Accessories)

  • Location: New York
  • Eligibility: Not specified
  • Important Dates: Not specified
  • Internship Period: Not specified​.

College student cleaning her room

 

Tiffany & Co. Internships, specifically in the realms of Product Merchandising – Home & Accessories, and Retail Merchandising – Home & Accessories, present an extraordinary opportunity in the array of fashion internships and programs for high school students.

These positions at Tiffany & Co., a paragon of luxury and craftsmanship, provide interns with a first-hand look at the intricate balance of artistry, business acumen, and customer engagement that defines the luxury retail industry.

Interns can delve into the operational strategies behind one of the most esteemed names in luxury goods, gaining insights into product assortment strategies, merchandising, and the financial analytics that support business decisions.

13. URBN Internships

  • Location: Philadelphia, PA (with virtual options available)
  • Eligibility: High school students interested in fashion retail and e-commerce
  • Important Dates: Not specified; traditionally, internships run from June through mid-August
  • Internship Period: 10 weeks​​​.

Group of students walking in the campus.

The URBN Internship program stands out as a premier opportunity for high school students in fashion internships and programs, offering a gateway into the dynamic and evolving world of fashion retail.

Hosted by URBN Inc., the powerhouse behind iconic brands such as Urban Outfitters, BHLDN, Free People, and Anthropologie, this program is set in Philadelphia, PA, with options for virtual participation.

Over ten weeks, students are immersed in a real-world professional setting, allowing them to gain firsthand experience in their preferred department, design, marketing, or another area within the fashion industry. This hands-on approach enables students to apply their learning in practical scenarios and explore various career paths within the fashion sector.

Conclusion

The landscape of fashion internships and programs for high school students is diverse and expansive, catering to a wide range of interests and career aspirations within the fashion industry. From the hands-on experience at a fashion summer camp in New York City to the digital marketing projects of a remote internship with an Italian brand, each opportunity is designed to enhance skills, broaden perspectives, and ignite passions.

These internships are not just summer jobs but are stepping stones to future success in fashion. They provide young fashionistas with the tools, knowledge, and connections to realize their dreams. As the fashion industry evolves, these internships represent critical entry points for the next generation of fashion leaders, designers, and innovators.

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