ALUM – Logan Benson
“Don’t be afraid to make bold choices,” said Logan Benson when asked what advice she would
give to students considering attending Iowa State for the apparel, merchandising, and design
For Logan, a current graduate student at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, the
apparel, merchandising, and design program at Iowa State University was just the preparation
she needed to pursue her dream career as a costume designer. Benson, class of 2021,
specialized in apparel design while also working on multiple shows in Iowa State’s theatre
department, both as a performer and designer.
Logan credited her Iowa State professors for stressing the importance of professionalism and
collaboration in a hands-on setting. She also thrived in the critique-based grading that her
“They ingrained into us during our program how important it was to collaborate. I find it much
easier than some of my peers who didn’t attend Iowa State.”
Graduating in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic left Logan with some uncertainty regarding
her future, but she knew she wanted to continue her education. Thus, she landed at UNCSA,
where she is pursuing an MFA in costume design.
Logan jumped into the program right away, assisting with her very first show and design project
simultaneously. First-year costume design students typically spread out this process, but Logan
was ready for anything that came her way. From one-act plays to devised pieces, she took any
opportunity she could to work on shows.
Logan designed the costumes for a science fiction/futuristic-inspired opera, Orlando Paladino.
She began the design process in July 2022 and worked on the opera for the following year and
a half. The opera made a debut on PBS featuring Logan’s designs.
Logan has designed costumes for multiple productions, including Mother Tongue, The Shawl
and Fifth Planet. She was the Costume Design Assistant and Wardrobe Supervisor for The
Loneliness of The Long Distance Runner and worked at 40+ Stage Company as the costume
designer for Third. Before moving to Winston-Salem, North Carolina, she worked as a Costume
Shop intern at a theater in Chicago.
Though her pursuit of continued education has taken her hundreds of miles away from
Iowa State’s campus, the lessons she learned in her undergraduate program continue
to help power her future.
When asked for parting advice, Logan paused and deadpanned, “Always have a sharp
pair of scissors.”