The Covid-19 pandemic has presented many obstacles and challenges for everyone. And while many schools and educational institutes were forced to move their classrooms online, what did this mean for fashion students who need to learn hands-on, practical skills? And what does this mean for the future of the fashion industry?
A day in the life of a fashion student during the pandemic
While Australia has a long history of remote learning, moving practical fashion courses online for students presented a challenge for many institutions. However, after the initial setting-up difficulties had been overcome and both teachers and students found their groove, many people began to see the pandemic as an opportunity to shake up the old methods in new, innovative and exciting ways. And really, isn’t that what the fashion industry has always been about?
At The Masters Institute of Creative Education, we faced our own set of challenges during the pandemic and the numerous enforced lockdowns. As our Holmes Institute Fashion Business students were moved to 100% online learning, we made every effort to ensure that the online classes were as interactive as possible with extra material, guest speakers and webinars — a few of the ways we tried to overcome the hurdles presented by the pandemic. Guest speakers were regularly invited to attend virtual workshops with the students, and online lectures were recorded so that students could play them back later.
Challenges faced by fashion students
While a virtual classroom cannot exactly replicate a brick-and-mortar classroom, this is not necessarily a bad thing. Even though students studying a fashion course have faced many challenges recently, focusing on the positive outcomes is important — and is what we do at The Masters Institute of Creative Education.
For example, we’ve all heard the terms ‘unprecedented’ and ‘once in a generation’ too many times to count by now. But this also puts many of us in the unique position to experience these occurrences first-hand and to play witness to these global events happening around us. We literally have front-row seats to the changes happening around us on a global scale and can see in real-time exactly how these changes have impacted the fashion industry. Responsiveness, adaptability, flexibility and innovation are key here, and we believe that this has helped our students to gain an entirely new perspective on recent events.
At The Masters Institute of Creative Education, many of our faculty prac-demics (which is what we call our teachers) work in the industry as well as lecture for us. This means that they were able to provide first-hand knowledge and experiences to their students so that our learners could keep up to date with all the changes happening in the industry as a result of the pandemic. This gave our students a unique, insider’s perspective on the industry they would soon be joining and allowed them to better understand how it had been impacted by these changes and how it was adapting and evolving to stay relevant.
Changes to the fashion industry post-pandemic
The recent upheaval to the fashion industry caused by the pandemic has disrupted many areas. For example, without the need to get dressed up and go out, tracksuit pants and activewear became the new normal for many of us working or studying from home. Plus, with physical stores temporarily closed for business, the digital sector saw a massive upswing in sales.
However, with retail stores closed, huge disruptions to supply lines, production slowing down, and a drop in demand, fashion companies and retailers had to rethink how they were doing things. All of this comes at a time when more and more consumers are voicing their concerns over how and where their clothes are made. For many, while affordability is still important, so are ethically and sustainably-made garments and accessories.
Taking all of these factors into consideration, the fashion industry has begun to think in a more ‘circular’ way. That is, instead of cheaply producing items, the focus is on creating quality garments that will last and can be recycled or upcycled.
This has created an exciting environment for fashion students with a strong interest in sustainability. There is no denying that we live in very different times — but there has never been a more exciting time to make your mark as a student of fashion.
Moving forward in the wake of a global pandemic
At The Masters Institute of Creative Education, our fashion students had many challenges to overcome when it came to interning, work experience and attending industry events. Some of our students took up online internships during the lockdowns, giving them a completely unique experience compared to past students who had not had similar challenges to deal with. With a clear shift towards online and digital work, our students have had the opportunity to learn valuable skills that will help them in their future careers.
However, as things have slowly begun to return to ‘normal’, a number of The Masters Institute of Creative Education’s 2021 graduating cohort have already secured job placements in the industry. Some of the latest roles our graduates have obtained are:
- Fashion & Production Assistant at Marie Claire
- Online Stylist at JD Sports
- Logistics & Wholesale Administrator at Giorgio Armani
- Fashion & Branding at Viceta Wang
Study a fashion course through The Masters Institute of Creative Education
While the effects of the pandemic are still being felt around the world and will almost definitely continue to be felt for some time, there is no reason why you can’t begin studying a course with a fashion major now. If you’ve been thinking of studying fashion in order to land a job in the industry, develop your existing talents or help you build your own business, now is the time.
At The Masters Institute of Creative Education, we have brought together five of Australia’s leading educational institutions to provide ambitious students with a top-quality selection of choices when it comes to studying a degree in fashion. We proudly offer accredited fashion courses from both the Melbourne School of Fashion and Holmes Institute, so you know you’re getting access to superior learning opportunities and high-quality coursework.
If you want to study a course in fashion, but you’re not sure where to begin, don’t worry — get in touch with our friendly team. We will help you find the right course to suit your career and education goals. Start fostering your talent today and discover how a fashion course could help you pursue the career of your dreams.