Student Spotlight: Michelle Olvera

Michelle Olvera

Michelle Olvera
Major: Fashion Studies

Ever since she was a little girl, Michelle Olvera liked to draw and make things.

"It didn't make any difference whether it was with clay or even Popsicle sticks," she said. "Then I started to make little pouches from old clothes and make clothes for my dolls, and eventually I decided that's what I wanted to do as a career." 

She heard about College of DuPage and the student fashion show on the radio.

"I decided to check out their web site and found out it was a two-year school. It was exactly what I was looking for -- something affordable that offered Fashion Design as a degree. I live on the southwest side of Chicago and even though I'm out of district and don't qualify for financial aid, COD has by far been the best choice I could have made," she said.

Olvera is a part-time student and plans to graduate in 2015. She then would like to transfer to Dominican University and earn a bachelor's degree in Fashion Design and Business, ultimately launching her own line of clothing.

During the 2013 COD student fashion show, Sketches, Olvera was named the First-Year Designer of the Year and was the first prize winner in the “uROCKit” competition, sponsored by Simplicity, SUEDEsays and Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores, for which she received a Simplicity Deluxe felting machine. The competition was initiated by Suede, a designer and "Project Runway" contestant who met with students on campus during the show.

"After my name was called out, I felt speechless. I worked so hard on all my designs and was so happy that the judges picked me," she said. "I really enjoyed participating in the fashion show and I will definitely participate again."

Olvera thanks College of DuPage for providing her with the education she needs to reach her goals.

"If you are looking for flexible hours and affordable tuition, COD is the perfect school. The staff is so knowledgeable and very approachable," she said. "I have learned so much from all my teachers and have gained so many friendships. I am confident that after I graduate I will be able to find an internship in downtown Chicago."

More about the Fashion Studies program