Wood Tobe-Coburn traces its history back to 1879, when Wood's New York School of Business and Shorthand was founded. Wood’s mission was to enable graduates to obtain rewarding employment, to develop and succeed in their careers, and to be productive and valued members of their communities.
In 1937, Tobe-Coburn School for Fashion Careers opened as the nation's first school to specialize in fashion merchandising and promotion. The school’s name comes from founders Miss Tobé, an internationally known fashion authority, and Julia Coburn, former fashion editor of the Ladies Home Journal. Miss Tobé’s establishment of the Tobe Report (a weekly fashion consulting report for retailers) in 1927 and the opening of the original school in 1937 were both seminal events marking the rising significance of the New York City fashion industry.
In 1991, the schools merged to become the Wood Tobe-Coburn School. Although many things have changed since 1879, the original mission of the school remains. Wood Tobe-Coburn continues to pair industry-driven classes with personalized student services to further the successful careers of our graduates.
Library of Congress Archives, Circa 1904
New York Times Archives