On education in Europe and the USA

Clever Magazine
Art&Fashion Universities Student life Angelina Nikonova

Not Only Design: What Professions In the Fashion Industry Are Worth Paying Attention To and Where to Study Them

The fashion industry is experiencing rapid growth, with an increasing number of diverse professions beyond traditional roles like designers and models. The article emphasizes the broad spectrum of careers, including technology specialists, sustainable fashion professionals, marketers, UX/UI designers, and educators. Statistics reveal the substantial employment scale within the industry. It delves into five prominent areas: Fashion Technologies, Sustainable Fashion, Marketing & Social Media, UX/UI Design, and Fashion Education, each offering unique opportunities and roles. Notable universities globally, providing comprehensive fashion education, are highlighted, along with the importance of scholarships in making fashion education more accessible.
The fashion industry is growing incredibly fast, and the number of jobs is increasing accordingly. If, for several decades, everyone associated this field with a limited number of working positions – say, fashion designers, models, and journalists – then today, there are exactly 100+ professions that come to mind. I would not want to exaggerate, and therefore, you will not find the exact number of professions in this article, but one thing is for sure – the number is increasing every year.

An important aspect, in my opinion, is to understand that the fashion industry is not only about creation (of things, showcases, magazines, etc.). This industry requires lawyers, IT specialists, data and trend analysts, managers, licensing specialists, and many others.
Therefore, if you aspire to become a lawyer or an IT specialist, it does not mean that the fashion industry is not for you.
Speaking of statistics, in the financial year 2021, the fashion industry in Australia employed around 489,000 workers. Considering a population of approximately 26 million, it is necessary to take into account that not the entire population is able-bodied; at a minimum, there are children and pensioners. Considering all this, the scale is amazing. The fashion industry provides jobs for a huge part of the country’s population. And that is just Australia.

Now, let’s talk about professions that are worth paying attention to in the fashion industry. Here are my top 5 areas.

Fashion Technologies

First and foremost, this is one of the fastest-growing areas, given that industries such as AI and blockchain are developing daily, if not hourly. And specialists are always needed. Therefore, this group requires a more detailed story.

Fashion tech specialists play a pivotal role in shaping the fashion industry’s future through their expertise in various technological domains. One crucial area of focus is e-commerce and online retail. These professionals actively contribute to the development and management of online retail platforms. Their responsibilities extend to optimizing user experiences, implementing cutting-edge e-commerce technologies, and ensuring the seamless functionality of online shopping websites.

Data analytics is another key realm where fashion tech specialists make a significant impact. Professionals in this role employ advanced data analytics tools to delve into consumer behavior, market trends, and sales data. By interpreting these insights, they empower fashion businesses to make informed decisions about inventory management, pricing strategies, and targeted marketing campaigns.

The incorporation of technology into clothing and accessories, known as wearable technology, represents a frontier where fashion tech specialists excel. Their expertise is demonstrated in creating innovative wearable tech products, including smart fabrics, connected accessories, and garments embedded with sensors for health monitoring and other functionalities.

In the realm of virtual and augmented reality (VR/AR), certain fashion tech specialists focus on implementing these immersive technologies. VR/AR applications have the potential to enhance virtual try-ons, create immersive shopping experiences, and revolutionize the presentation of fashion shows.

Supply chain management is another crucial domain where technology plays a pivotal role, and fashion tech specialists contribute by implementing software solutions for inventory management, order tracking, and logistics optimization. This contribution ensures greater efficiency and transparency throughout the entire supply chain.

In the pursuit of innovative production methods, fashion tech specialists may explore the realm of 3D printing technology. This application allows for the creation of clothing, accessories, and even footwear with innovative design possibilities and more sustainable production methods.

Artificial intelligence (AI) is a powerful tool harnessed by fashion tech specialists to provide personalized recommendations, conduct trend analysis, and facilitate demand forecasting in the industry. The implementation of AI algorithms significantly improves various aspects of the fashion business, enhancing customer experiences and operational efficiency.

Addressing the evolving landscape of supply chain transparency and anti-counterfeiting measures, some fashion tech specialists concentrate on the application of blockchain technology. This technology contributes to improving the traceability of garments and ensures a higher level of authenticity and accountability throughout the supply chain.

Lastly, in the arena of tech-enabled fashion education, fashion tech specialists play a vital role in the development of online courses, virtual classrooms, and interactive learning experiences. Their involvement ensures that individuals studying fashion-related disciplines have access to cutting-edge educational resources and methodologies, contributing to the advancement of the industry as a whole.

Sustainable Fashion

The realm of sustainable fashion is increasingly gaining importance in response to the growing awareness of the detrimental impact of the fashion industry on our planet. This niche, although relatively new, offers a unique opportunity to stand at its origins and contribute to its development. Numerous professions are encompassed within this domain, including sustainable textile developers, circular fashion experts, and sustainable fashion educators, each playing a crucial role in promoting environmentally conscious practices.

Marketing & Social Media

Fashion marketing and social media management constitute another pivotal aspect of the industry. These professionals, such as social media managers, digital marketers, influencers, and fashion content creators, serve as the face of companies. Their roles are integral to shaping a brand’s image and connecting with consumers. The emergence of content creators as a relatively new but incredibly popular profession in recent years underscores their impact on brand visibility and engagement.

UX/UI Design

In the digital age, the significance of user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) design cannot be overstated. Fashion brands are increasingly investing in digital experiences, making UX/UI designers indispensable assets in the industry. Their expertise is vital for creating engaging and user-friendly online platforms that enhance the overall customer experience.

Fashion Education

Lastly, the field of fashion education and research is thriving. With a growing interest in the academic study of fashion, there are abundant opportunities for professionals in this domain. As the industry evolves, there is an increasing demand for individuals involved in shaping the educational landscape and conducting research to advance our understanding of fashion’s multifaceted dynamics.

Fortunately, fashion education has witnessed significant growth in recent years, although its accessibility remains comparatively narrower than in other fields. Thus, it is imperative to engage in continuous discussions to promote awareness. Here are several noteworthy universities for those considering a career in fashion:
Parsons School of Design, New York City, USA
Undoubtedly, renowned for its remarkable alumni that include influential figures like Donna Karan, Marc Jacobs, and Alexander Wang.

Parsons fosters collaboration between different design disciplines, encouraging a holistic understanding of design’s impact on various industries. The school actively promotes innovation and sustainability in design, addressing contemporary issues and encouraging critical thinking.
Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT), New York City, USA
FIT provides a diverse array of faculties, including “Fabric Styling,” “Fashion and Textile Studies,” “Fashion Business Management,” and “Fashion Design.” Unique programs like “Footwear and Accessories Design” and “Cosmetics and Fragrance Marketing” further enhance its offerings.
Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), Georgia, USA
Recognized for its programs in fashion marketing and management, SCAD also boasts a faculty titled “Design for Sustainability,” reflecting its commitment to environmentally conscious design.
London College of Fashion (LCF), University of the Arts London (UAL), UK
LCF offers innovative courses such as “Fashion Entrepreneurship and Innovation.” Unique programs like “Knitwear Design,” “Jewelry Design,” “Fashion Journalism,” and “Biodesign” contribute to its diverse curriculum.
Central Saint Martins (CSM), University of the Arts London (UAL), UK
It is another college that is part of the University of the Arts London (UAL) system. CSM is renowned for its innovative and avant-garde approach to fashion education. It offers a variety of fashion-related programs, including Fashion Design and Fashion Journalism.
Polimoda, Florence, Italy
Polimoda, a renowned institution in fashion education, stands out with unique programs like “Fashion Art Direction” in collaboration with Vogue Italia, “Fashion Trend Forecasting,” and “Sustainable Fashion.”
Istituto Marangoni, Milan, Italy
Situated in Milan, a global fashion capital, Istituto Marangoni offers comprehensive programs in fashion business, design, and technology. There are also Istituto Marangoni campuses in Florence, Paris, London, Dubai, and Mumbai.
ESMOD, Paris, France
ESMOD Paris is one of the oldest and most prestigious fashion schools in the world, founded in 1841. It has gained recognition for its commitment to providing quality education in the field of fashion.

ESMOD has a vast and influential network within the fashion industry. The school has established connections with fashion houses, designers, and professionals, providing students with opportunities for internships, collaborations, and exposure to real-world experiences.

The noteworthy aspect is that the university recognizes the importance of effective communication in the fashion industry and provides courses in fashion communication.
Institut Français de la Mode (IFM), Paris, France
IFM is renowned for its comprehensive program in “Fashion & Luxury Management.” The institute has a strong reputation within the fashion industry.
Hong Kong Polytechnic University – Institute of Textiles and Clothing
This institute offers programs in fashion technology and smart textiles, allowing students to explore the intersection of traditional textile techniques with cutting-edge technology within the Faculty of Applied Science and Textiles.
Bunka Fashion College, Tokyo, Japan
Japan’s first fashion school. Bunka Fashion College in Tokyo is highly regarded in the fashion world. It has a strong emphasis on both design and technology, and its alumni include influential figures in the Japanese fashion industry.
While discussing the university selection process, faculties, and entrance requirements, it is crucial to highlight that numerous universities provide scholarships, not only for education but also for accommodation expenses. Given that education in the fashion field can be one of the most expensive, the availability of scholarships offers an excellent opportunity to reduce expenses and study at some of the best institutions.

Prospective students should actively explore scholarship opportunities on the university websites, paying close attention to deadlines. Additionally, considering faculty members and university partnerships is vital. For instance, programs like “Fashion Art Direction” in collaboration with Vogue Italia at Polimoda provide students with exceptional opportunities to establish connections within the industry while still pursuing their studies. Building connections with teachers, guest speakers, and university partners during the course of study is invaluable for future success in the field.