Allison Childers

Major: Apparel, Merchandising, and Design
Class: Senior
Timeframe: Fall 2022
Program: London College of Fashion
Destination: England

Overall Experience

My overall experience studying abroad in London was nothing short of amazing. It was the best experience of my life, and I would do anything to relive it again. London is a fantastic city with much to offer, and London College of Fashion is a highly well-rounded university. The teachers are all industry professionals, so you learn first-hand industry knowledge.

Learning experience

The most valuable learning experience I encountered was how different classes are taught in London. Everything is very hands-on and is not test-focused. That was a learning adjustment for me because the teaching style was something I needed to be used to, and I was challenged in many different ways. So, overall, the entire learning experience was precious.

Memorable experience

The most memorable experience for me was traveling to Paris and getting engaged! I know this is a very abnormal experience for most studying abroad, but it was my most memorable and exceptional experience.

What did you not expect?

Something I didn't expect that surprised me was how the fashion industry is very "smoke and mirrors." This was touched on a lot in my luxury brand management course, and I learned so much. The fashion industry is perceived in a certain way by individuals or people on the outside, and once you get it, it might be different from what you expected. Being told that and learning about the luxury industry in depth changed how I will approach my professional life because I am interested in the luxury industry.

What advice would you give?

The advice I have for other students who want to study abroad or have a similar experience as I did is to go for it. At first, I was scared to be so far away from my friends and family and questioned if I would enjoy it. But once I was there, I knew it was what I've always wanted, and I was ok with the fact that it would initially feel scary. Embrace all the new things happening in your life, try new things, and go in with zero expectations. Everyone's experience is different and unique, and you are in charge of deciding how you want that to unfold. So, prepare to learn new things about yourself and the industry. It will be the best experience of your life.

How has this experience impacted your life?

This experience has impacted my life in more ways than one. It has affected my personal life because I have learned so much about myself through this process. Being completely alone in a foreign country makes you grow and discover things you never knew about yourself. Studying abroad has impacted my educational/career goals because I got to learn so much hands-on knowledge I feel so confident going into the workforce. I learned so much about my creative interests in the fashion industry, and it has helped me define a career path for my future.

How did you learn about this experience?

I first learned about this international opportunity while visiting Iowa State on a student experience tour. Learning about international opportunities was one of the reasons I chose to commit to Iowa State.

International Connections