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Outdoor Product Design and Development

Welcome to Outdoor Product Design & Development!

Outdoor Product Design & Development provides students the opportunity to learn the design principles and technical skills necessary to bring innovative and impactful products to market. Over the course of 4 years, students will learn the process of product creation, how to communicate design through sketching and digital tools, and how to translate designs into protoypes and final products through hands on projects.

OPDD students can design anything they put their mind to, including ice axes, a line of sustainable apparel, soccer cleats, and many other exciting products!

Students have access to 6 different labs on campus to get their hands dirty and translate their sketches and digital renderings into prototypes and finished products.

Students in OPDD end up working in a variety of full-time positions including designer, technical developer, product line manager, supply chain manager, and more.

OPDD was created with the help of the Industry Advisory Board including representatives from companies including Patagonia, VF Corporation, Black Diamond, and more.

OPDD Student Resources 



Contact or schedule an appointment with your advisor to create a plan that is best for you to graduate. 

Find My Advisor



All matriculated OPDD students are eligible to apply for a scholarship. Last year over $30,000 were awarded.

View Scholarships



Students looking for their required internships opportunites, or companies looking to advertise can contact staff.

Internship Info


Sustainability Certificate

OPDD has partnered with the Outdoor Industry Association to launch the online Outdoor Industry Business Certificate.

Register Now

OPDD students and faculty in the news!

Read stories about what students and faculty in the OPDD program are building and creating HERE.

History of Gear Series: Sally McCoy

History of Gear Series: Sally McCoy


Sally McCoy, industry legend and former senior leader at companies like The North Face, Sierra Designs, and Camelbak, talks about her introduction to the outdoor industry, her non-profit work, and the evolution of the outdoor industry.

Alumni Spotlight: Rachel Bodily / Skullcandy

Alumni Spotlight: Rachel Bodily / Skullcandy


Rachel Bodily (Class of 2020) shares her experience as a recent graduate, finding a job during the pandemic, and her new role as a Color, Materials, and Finish Designer for Skullcandy.

Lauren Voigt Talks Backcountry Culture and Interview Tips

Lauren Voigt Talks Backcountry Culture and Interview Tips


Lauren Voigt is a Talent Acquistion Partner at Lauren Voigt, a Talent Acquisition Partner at spoke to the OPDD Industry Seminar class about Backcountry, their growing owned brands team, and tips for nailing the interview.


Utah Industry Resource Alliance Partner

Utah State University’s Utah Manufacturing Extension Service and the Outdoor Products Design and Development program have combined to create the Manufacturing and Outdoor Products support hub. The two programs also became founding members of the Utah Industry Resource Alliance (UIRA). The UIRA is a vital economic development organization chartered specifically to help Utah manufacturers, industry, and rural Utah businesses. UIRA's primary focus is to Help Utah’s Manufacturers Grow and Thrive. The UIRA serves as the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) Center for Utah, providing services and outreach to all 29 counties. It focuses on improving the bottom line through concepts like process improvement and operational efficiencies, supply chain optimization, and quality systems and certifications. It also focuses on helping companies grow through new technologies, workforce development, strategic planning, and expanded markets.

Become an Aggie

To become an aggie, here are four things you need to do: 

  1. Apply to USU
  2. Find a Place to Live
  3. Check scholarships and funding opportuinites 
  4. Submerge into Student Life