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Top Students Will Be Considered for a One-Year Paid Apprenticeship at the New Balance Design Foundry

Portland, Ore. — PENSOLE Footwear Design Academy today announced registration is open for its second master class in partnership with New Balance, according to PENSOLE founder D’Wayne Edwards.

This year’s program, called The PENSOLE Master Class in Footwear Design, will be sponsored by New Balance and Modo, the 3D modeling and rendering tool from UK-based Foundry; and Lenovo. Like the 2017 class, this will be a hands-on, three-week, intensive footwear, color and materials design immersion program to introduce aspiring designers to the art of footwear design. Lenovo will sponsor five computers for students to use during the Master Class.

“More than 15 of our students have apprenticed with New Balance since PENSOLE began,” Edwards said. “And last year’s Master Class was highly successful with the selection of five students for apprenticeship from that class alone. Adding Foundry’s 3D visual effects and modeling software brings a new level of technology to our design curriculum.”

Top students from this class will be considered for a one-year paid apprenticeship in design with New Balance.

The program will be held from January 16-February 6 at New Balance’s design and development facility in Lawrence, MA. Prospective students can register online only at

Registration closes on Sunday, December 10. On Friday, December 15, PENSOLE and New Balance will choose from the pool of aspiring designers from around the globe, selecting the top 25 candidates in three categories—15 in footwear, five in color and material design (CMD), and five 3D designers—to attend the Master Class.

The PENSOLE Master Class in Footwear Design will feature industry professionals from New Balance and Foundry’s Modo team, ranging from design directors, designers, design recruiters, technicians and developers – all willing to share knowledge to help inspire, guide and challenge students to reach their creative potential.

Within its core curriculum, PENSOLE introduces its students to all the basic aspects of footwear design and emphasizes professional skills such as:

• Design process
• Design sketching
• Design briefs
• 3D design and visualization
• Terminologies
• Color strategy
• Material design
• Material fundamentals
• Time management
• Business conduct
• Personal branding
• Portfolio development
• Resume development
• Verbal presentation

PENSOLE’s “learn by doing” curriculum teaches students the entire footwear design process: inspiration, concept-development, design process, problem solving, materials, business, networking, marketing, and branding. PENSOLE features the most sought after faculty in footwear, comprised of both young professional designers and established footwear design leaders from the top footwear brands, with more than 100 years combined experience to help you with your professional development.

D’Wayne Edwards, a celebrated member of the global footwear community for the last 28 years, founded PENSOLE to give talented young design students—regardless of socioeconomic background—an opportunity to learn from the industry’s best, without financial barriers, and to provide the industry with a farm system for the next generation of footwear designers.

Since the first PENSOLE class in 2010, more than 300 Academy graduates have been placed professionally, full-time or as interns, for footwear companies worldwide, including Columbia Sportswear, Timberland, Converse, AND1, New Balance, Wolverine, Cole Haan, Under Armour, Keen, Ariat, Stride Rite, adidas, JORDAN, Kenneth Cole, Reebok and Nike.


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