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IIT launches SL’s first fashion-oriented Masters program


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By Divya Thotawatte

Informatics Institute of Technology (IIT) recently launched Sri Lanka’s first fashion-oriented Masters program with the introduction of the MA Fashion Business Management from the University of Westminster, UK. 

The Masters in Fashion Business Management program was launched in Sri Lanka by the University of Westminster in its commitment to developing innovative programs for individuals pursuing careers in the fashion industry locally and internationally. It will provide students with the strategic decision-making, leadership and problem-solving skills required to become an entrepreneurial and visionary fashion business leader in today’s fastest evolving fashion industry. 

“The fashion industry is constantly evolving and the apparel industry in Sri Lanka requires expertise in fashion business management to promote, manage the brands and take it to the next level.  This program is a great opportunity for local students to follow Masters in fashion in their homeland accredited by Westminster,” stated Informatics Group of Companies Head of Human Resources Ruvinika Senarath.

MA Fashion Business Management Spearhead and Fashion Entrepreneur Prasanna Pathmanathan stated, “The Masters in Fashion Business Management is a necessity in Sri Lanka because local graduates who have finished their degree in fashion designing, when they move on in their career, need a program for higher education. That is where this MA program comes in.”

He added that the MA in Fashion Business Management that they have introduced will help not only the fashion students but students who wished to pursue a career in any industry including marketing, digital marketing and business management

The course offers an innovative and state-of-the-art fashion business course that focuses on preparing students’ entry into senior roles in business and management within the fashion industry. The syllabus has been specifically designed to train individuals to polish their skills and become visionaries in their respective industries. 

They will also be able to understand the process of making sound management decisions by utilising the knowledge and skills that they have acquired. The course provides an in-depth knowledge in areas of Supply Chain Management, Strategic Fashion Business Management, Fashion Marketing and Entrepreneurship followed by a Fashion Business Project. The intake commences in September 2018. 

Speaking at the event, Hirdaramani Group Director Nikhil Hirdaramani addressed the future of the Sri Lankan apparel industry. He said, “Sustainability is becoming more important in our industry. The resources are limited in the country and therefore we have to be above the rest and use a sustainable formula.” 

He also gave a SWOT analysis of the future of the apparel industry. He said that ethical, dependable, long lasting relationships in the industry were strengths while rising costs and limited resources were a weakness. While he identified developing markets and technology as opportunities he saw global volatility, low cost countries and climate change as threats for the fashion industry of the country. 

During the launch ceremony, creations by established fashion designers in the local industry including Darshi Keerthisena (Buddhi Batiks), Amilani Perera and Indi Yapa Abeywardena were showcased.

University of Westminster Alumni can be found working in senior positions all over the world, including world-famous brands such as Dior, Louis Vuitton, Marks and Spencer, Nordstrom, Bloomingdales, Neiman Marcus, Net a Porter, Aldo, Loro Piana, Li and Fung, Dunhill, Aurora Fashions, Prada Hong Kong, Omega, Hermes, Purple Tree and Anthropologie.  

Informatics Institute of Technology (IIT) was established in 1990 as the first private higher education institute that awards reputed British degrees in the fields of ICT and Business. IIT is a campus offering internal postgraduate and undergraduate degrees from the University of Westminster, UK and Robert Gordon University, UK.

Pix by Shehan Gunasekara


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