Fashion - Fashion Business Management
Written by: Timiro Mohamed
As would be published in the April 2020 issue of Lazy Faire Magazine.
This month’s theme is “Going Beyond Business”: challenging the one-dimmensional narrative of business and making room for various voices. In doing so, there needs to be room for creativity and a way to make space for diverse perspectives in business. The business world is vast and there are many sectors, each requiring innovative ways of thinking and solving problems. In light of recent events, there has been a lot of buzz online about this idea of going beyond conventional business models. With the spread of COVID-19 leading to near global quarantine, millenials on twitter have been avidly discussing the idea of “side hustles”. A recent article published by Nasdaq Online speaks to recent shifts in the stock market and even walks the reader through the necessary steps to creating a side hustle. Perhaps there is more than one way to go beyond conventional business while still carving out a space in the industry. In keeping with the theme of renewal and creativity, I took a look at a unique program at the University of Alberta that bridges the gap between creativity and business while still maintaining a foothold in the business world. The fashion business management program is a collaboration between the Faculty of ALES and the Alberta School of Business. It is a four year degree program that offers students a blend of core business skills and an understanding for the complexities of the fashion world. Students cover all of their bases in business including courses in: marketing, buying, selling, strategic planning and management. In addition, there is coursework specific to the demands of the fashion industry, including clothing design, production, and distribution. Fashion retail is a major industry, which has displayed considerable growth in recent years. Not surprisingly, Alberta has a budding fashion scene. Groups like Promoting Arts Redefining Kulture (PARK) contribute to the talented hub of artists with their Calgary-based fashion label. They host local events including ticketed runway shows featuring renowned designers. Another key player in local fashion is Western Canada Fashion Week which is taking place this year in Edmonton during the fall. With such a vibrant local scene, a program like this seems to be a great fit for the University of Alberta. Despite the opportunity the fashion retail sector displays, the University of Alberta’s program was the first of its kind in Western Canada. Its unique blend of fashion and business principles offers students a leg up in the extremely competitive fashion industry. Ultimately, the business world is multifaceted and programs like this offer students a fresh look at key industries.