In the College of Human Ecology .
The Fiber Science major is unique in the Ivy League. Students study the physical, chemical, and engineering properties of fibrous materials for applications including textiles for fashion, functional, smart or protective clothing, biomedical textiles, engineering composites, nanofibers, and high performance materials.
The scientific study of fibrous materials, builds on foundations in biology, chemistry, engineering, mathematics, and physics. Students learn fiber composition and about their chemical, mechanical, biological and physical properties. Students explore the role of fiber science in the design and fabrication of traditional and innovative products, from clothing to smart devices, life-saving medical implants and composite structures. Because fiber science has applications in so many areas, majors can tailor their studies to meet personal, academic and professional goals.
Within this major, students get individual attention and develop one-on-one relationships with faculty. Each student has the opportunity to individualize their plan of study, with 50% of their course credits chosen from broad categories or as free electives. The curriculum provides great flexibility for students to pursue materials science, biomedical science, ergonomics or product development in performance and functional apparel or soft goods. With its rigorous requirement of physical science courses, it can be excellent preparation for a range of graduate and professional studies including medical school.
Beyond formal course work, all Fiber Science students have opportunities to participate in undergraduate research with a faculty member. Field placements, joining a faculty member’s research team, or conducting independent research can add a significant experiential component to the course of study, providing valuable practical knowledge while testing students’ academic or career interests. Many students choose to study abroad or participate in an international exchange program for one semester during their Junior year.
Y. Gowayed, Chair (HEB T57); F. Baytar, C. Blumenkamp, M. Conroy, M. Frey, D. Green, J. Hinestroza, F. Kozen, T. Lewis, V.D. Lewis, H. Park, K. Phoenix, J. Reed, L. Shepherd, T. Uyar.
All Fiber Science majors are matched with a faculty advisor by the Director of Undergraduate Studies. Students are strongly urged to discuss their goals, course selection and sequence, electives, and career plans with their faculty advisor. Students are free to change advisors; changes must be recorded with the Director of Undergraduate Studies. It is the student’s responsibility to keep track of their courses and to make sure that the program meets graduation requirements for their major and college.
All work done as part of the academic program will be held by the department until it has been released by the instructor. Certain exceptional work may be used by the department to exhibit for academic purposes. The department is not responsible for the loss or theft of student work.
Recent graduates of the Fiber Science program have begun careers with fiber and textile firms, outdoor and athleticwear firms, protective apparel firms, testing laboratories, and government agencies. Students have continued to graduate studies in polymer or materials science, engineering, and technology or to medical, business or law school.