Welcome Back from the Executive Director of the Sc...

Welcome Back from the Executive Director of the School of Fashion

Dear online and onsite students of the School of Fashion,

Welcome back to the remainder of the Spring Semester! We have had a great school year so far and I am looking forward to the remaining weeks to be even greater! At the end of last semester, we launched the eighth issue of 180 Magazine celebrating ten years at New York Fashion Week. You can still pick up a copy at any host desk or view the online version here.

One of my favorite events during the spring semester is the Graduation Fashion Show and I am happy to announce the date of the show will be Wednesday, May 11th with Kate and Laura Mulleavy of Rodarte joining us as our guests of honor.

Image Courtesy:

Image Courtesy:

My biggest priority as executive director of the School of Fashion is the quality of our students’ experiences, in and out of the classroom. If you are having any trouble in class, please take the time to talk to your instructors and advisors. If you need help outside of the classroom, please consider attending our many workshops and reach out to ARC by Phone: (415)-618-3917 or

Just a reminder! We have changed our social media handles to @AcademyUFashion, and our official hashtag to #AcademyUFashion. Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and Instagram, and continue to check out our blog Fashion School Daily for Student Spotlights, Alumni Updates, behind the scenes sneak peaks, and everything that our online and onsite fashion community needs to know. We also have a press room with newspaper and magazine stories on our students, alumni and fashion events, as well as recaps on the recent New York Fashion Week shows and Graduation Fashion Shows.

I would also like to take this time to announce the following promotions and new hires within the School of Fashion.

  • John Bauernfeind, Assistant Director of Menswear Design, is presently building the proposal for the School of Fashion to have the only accredited menswear degree program in the United States. John previously held the position of Menswear Design Coordinator. He holds a M.A. in Fashion Menswear from Central Saint Martins College of Arts and Design, and a B.F.A. in Fashion Design from Parsons School of Design. He has worked as a design consultant and illustrator for fashion forecaster companies Stylesight and The Doneger Group, as well as worked for CK Jeans Calvin Klein, Vanderbilt for Murjani, Knitcraft/St. Croix, London Fog Industries, Inc., BCBGMAXAZRIA, and Pollini in various capacities. Since 2005, he has taught fashion at various universities.
  • Ryan De La Hoz, Printed Textiles Tech, joined the School of Fashion in 2016. He has been working in galleries, museums, and schools since moving to San Francisco in 2006. His work has been published by Gestalten books in Berlin, FLJ Magazine in Tokyo, Juxtapoz Magazine in California, and Tunica Magazine in NYC. In 2011, he was awarded the Canson Wet Paint Grant.
  • Jayne Foster, Graduate Director of Fashion, was previously a full time design instructor. Jayne graduated from The Royal College of Art with a M.A. in Womenswear. She has designed for a private label that showed in London, Paris, and New York. Her freelance clients included House of Fraser, Urban Outfitters, and Whistles. She created a collection of concept designs for Burton Snowboards for both the main women’s range and the younger B by Burton range, designed textiles for Hop Lun Lingerie, and her fashion illustration work has been exhibited in London galleries. Before joining the School of Fashion in 2012, she taught design for eight years in London and designed for the British brand Monsoon.
  • Matthew Gerring, Full time Merchandising Faculty, joined the School of Fashion teaching part time in 2007 and joined the faculty full time in Spring 2016. He has worked as the Textile Department Head for event design and production company DaVinci Fusion, a Fabrication Artist with Scientific Arts Studio working on exhibits for government and corporate clients, and a Habitat Artist for The National Aquarium in Baltimore, MD. Matthew received a B.F.A. from the Maryland Institute College of Art where he studied painting and fiber art, and received a National Merit Scholarship. He received a M.F.A. from the California College of the Arts where he studied Textiles, received a National Merit Scholarship, and was the recipient of the prestigious Artist in Residence program at the Headlands Center for the Arts. He also completed the renowned artist residency at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture where only 65 applicants are accepted each year.
  • Anne Gittinger, Curriculum Manager, joined the School of Fashion in 2013 to support the directors and instructors in the development of online courses as Online Curriculum Development Coordinator. Her new role includes curriculum development for both onsite and online. Before that, she was a content editor and supervisor in the University’s Cyber Campus. Previously, she managed the development of print and online supplements for art, design, and humanities textbooks at Thomson Higher Education (now Cengage Learning). She holds a B.A. in History from Amherst College, and an M.A. in American studies from the College of William and Mary.
  • Gary Miller, Director of Fashion, was previously Associate Director of Design. Gary is a Menswear Fashion Director with more than 16 years of experience in New York and London. His design scope encompasses building and maintaining a brand’s identity, initiating a start-up concept, reinvigorating an existing line, and nurturing an ongoing successful brand. For many years, he worked as a Design Director for the men’s sportswear division at Macy’s Merchandising Group in New York. Previously, he had worked at The Men’s Wearhouse, Wilke-Rodriguez, Here and There (now part of The Doneger Group), and Michiko Koshino. Gary holds a B.A. in Fashion Design with Textiles from Ravensbourne College of Design and Communication in the U.K.
  • Akemi Okamoto, Freshman Student Online Coordinator, joined the School of Fashion teaching part time in 2006 and became full time in Spring 2016. Akemi received her B.F.A. in Fashion Design from Academy of Art University. She began her career at Anna Sui in New York, and has designed for Koret of California, and Levi’s, as well as freelance pattern making and design for other companies. Akemi had the opportunity to work with celebrity stylist Mariel Haenn in 2007 for Rhianna’s “Umbrella” video. From 2011-2014 Akemi was the designer/owner of Akemi Okamoto a better contemporary line based out of San Francisco. She showed in the San Francisco and Los Angeles markets and retailed in stores along the West Coast.
  • Jim Yang, Fashion Foundations Coordinator, was previously Drawing Coordinator. Jim began his career in the art industry as a 3D Animator at Radical Entertainment, a Vancouver-based game company. After working primarily with digital mediums, he decided to pursue more traditional media and enrolled full time at the Academy of Art University, majoring in traditional illustration, where he graduated with honors. He began teaching online for the School of Fashion in 2007 while hosting local workshops in Vancouver, Canada, and became full time onsite in 2012.

Once again, welcome back and I am looking forward to a successful semester for all of us!


Simon Ungless

Executive Director of the School of Fashion and Editor-in-Chief of 180 Magazine