What’s it like to study a semester abroad on a Vogue Certificate Course?

Carly Fisher at Vogue House on the Vogue Certificate Course

A rising senior at the University of Texas, Austin, Carly Fisher from Chicago, packed her bags and headed to London to undertake a semester abroad at the Condé Nast College studying the 11 week long, Vogue Certificate in Fashion Marketing


Carly decided to undertake a semester abroad wanting to gain exposure to new cultures, people and different perspectives. With an interest in communications, Carly chose to do a Vogue Certificate course – a short course focussed on fashion marketing that covers modules in fashion marketing and promotion, fashion and society and fashion retail environments. Here, we find out how she did it and how it has helped her work towards her goals of working in the fashion industry.


What was the process like for arranging to study a semester abroad with another college?

At my home university, most students study abroad through affiliate or exchange programs. Since CNC is not an affiliated university, it required work in order to have the program approved. This process involved several meetings with my academic advisor, my university’s office of registrar, and department heads within Global Risk and Safety. The most difficult step was ensuring that the academic credits would transfer back to the United States. In order to do so, I had to de-affiliate with UT Austin and take a semester off. l was finally able to get approval for 12 transfer credits (which is equivalent to one semester’s worth of courses).


Why did you choose the Condé Nast College?

When applying to the college, I was drawn to the opportunity of immersing myself in the community style of learning while tailoring the course of study to my unique interests. The length of the course was appealing, as it was an appropriate amount of time to deepen my industry knowledge and make meaningful connections without committing to a full semester of study. Further, I was excited by the school’s close relationship with the British Vogue, understanding its paramount role as a driving force in fashion. After reading student testimonials and attending informational briefings, it was clear that CNC would spur my future endeavours as I enter the workforce. 

Carly Fisher on the Vogue Certificate Course


What was it about the Vogue Certificate course that appealed to you?

Prior to my time at CNC, I was exposed to the ins and outs of marketing through two internship roles. I was intrigued by the fact that the Vogue Certificate course was specifically concentrated in this area while also giving me the opportunity to explore the industry through the lens of fashion.  


What was a highlight of the course?

One of my favourite parts of the course was getting the opportunity to learn firsthand from industry experts. Attending panels at Vogue House was such an incredible experience, and I greatly value all of the advice we were given as the aspiring future of the fashion industry. Not only were all of the CNC professors exceptionally passionate about their areas of expertise, but they were also more than willing to offer advice in an effective manner. Their flexibility and attention to each student was a testament to their dedication, and it fostered a learning environment unlike any other. 


What were the classes like? Did you have any favourites?

Each of my three modules offered a different angle to fashion marketing. Working on a final project end-to-end, from brainstorming stages to visual design and execution, I observed all of the moving parts in this multistep process. My favourite class at CNC was [Fashion] Marketing and Promotion. I found it very industry applicable, as I had the opportunity to employ my marketing skills to a trending brand. Furthermore, I was also able to develop PR strategies and map promotional events, which are skills that I hope to practise in the workforce. 


How did you find the classes compared to what you are used to at your College?

While my classes at CNC were unlike any at my college, I was able to use my skillsets and prior knowledge to thrive. My professors were always connecting course material directly to relevant industry practices, and all of my work felt meaningful in regards to my academic development. For example, at my college in the United States, essays are a typical assignment. At CNC, writing was taken a step further with visual elements and industry field work. 


What were some of the most valuable skills you learned?

I now feel equipped to use Adobe Design softwares to visually express my creativity in a professional manner. Before this training, I had never used any Adobe platform. Despite my initial intimidation, I found the design process with Photoshop and InDesign to be exciting, and now is a unique asset to my resume.


Was it easy to make friends and slot in with students you hadn’t met before?

Yes! It definitely helped that other Certificate students were studying internationally. I loved getting to know them while bonding over our shared love for fashion and exploring all that London has to offer! 

Carly Fisher on the Vogue Certificate Course

How did you find the area?

I absolutely loved the area, and I miss London so much already! Given that the college is surrounded by other university campuses, I always felt safe. It is also in close proximity to a handful of restaurants, stores, and outdoor spaces! 


How has the Vogue Certificate Course helped you so far? Did you feel the course may have shaped or aided your career goals?

The Certificate course helped me find clarity in my future career path. My prior internship roles, along with my university courses, initially sparked my interest in the PR industry. While I’ve always had a passion for fashion, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to pursue this area professionally. However, after taking the course, I feel confident that I am meant to stay on this track. While completing the Vogue Marketing Certificate, I had the opportunity to push my creative boundaries as I also explored new approaches to PR strategies. I am so grateful for all of the mentorship I received during my time at CNC, and I know that I will always hold this experience close to my heart! 


What’s next for you when you finish your course?

I am currently interning in New York City at KCD Worldwide, a global Fashion PR Agency! Following this summer, I have one more year of school at UT Austin. Post graduation, I hope to continue my career in PR within the fashion space. 

What is the best thing about experiencing a semester abroad?

Studying in London gave me the opportunity to explore a passion of mine through an interdisciplinary lens and surrounded by all new perspectives. I absolutely loved travelling around Europe and exploring new cultures (and food!). 

Carly Fisher on the Vogue Certificate Course

What’s the scariest thing about doing a semester abroad?

While studying abroad, I was forced to acclimate to a new environment, unlike ones I’m used to. This was initially a challenge, but as I settled into a routine and made connections with peers and mentors, I began to feel comfortable in my new home. I eventually embraced this discomfort, knowing that I was being pushed to grow both personally and professionally. 


What are your key tips for students wanting to study a semester abroad?

It’s all about stepping out of your comfort zone! Try new things, ask for help along the way, and don’t be intimidated by unfamiliarity. My experience studying in London not only drove my professional endeavours, but I also learned so much about myself and what I’m capable of!


Explore our Vogue Certificate Courses each worth 45 Credits at Level 4 studying alongside our BA (Hons) Fashion Communication programme. 



Please note – if you successfully complete all three certificate programmes you can graduate with a Vogue Diploma in Fashion Communication