Do you love brands and labels, yearn to design for celebrities, desire to design for the ramp ? Make sure you check out the fashion and design school at MDIS, Singapore.

When Coco Chanel made the statement — “Fashion changes, but style endures,” little did she know how much of a statement it would become for any fashion enthusiast. Students aspiring to study fashion make sure to weave this into their system and that’s exactly what the students at MDIS have believed in too.

As part of its growth and development strategy, MDIS set up a School of Fashion and Design recently. The course comprises a Diploma in Fashion Design and Marketing which allows the students to either pursue a degree programme in BA (Hons) Fashion Design or a BA (Hons) Fashion Marketing and Branding.

The decision to move into the design arena has been in line with the directives of the Singapore Government to make Singapore a Fashion Hub.

To achieve this status, the Singapore Government has set up several bodies, one being the Ministry of Information, Communications and the Arts.

Aimed at developing Singapore as a global city, it seeks to propel the creative economy through creative industries in arts, design, media and Infocomm technology sectors and create new economic value and jobs.

Students can be admitted into the Diploma in Fashion Design and Marketing upon successfully completing Class X.

Students who wish to join the B.A. (Hons) Fashion Design, awarded by Nottingham Trent University, can apply after they pass Class XII, providing a portfolio of their sketches.

What you learn

Diploma:

Under the diploma, which is a 12-month programme, students will have a firm foundation in research, design methodology and practical skills in drawing and communications.

The programme also prepares students who would embark into the business of fashion with a basic introduction from marketing and business to merchandising and PR.

Hypothesis of Fashion is the core for both areas of study and it forms the relevant history and backbone of fashion. In addition, the students will experience a range of fashion activities that will assess their strengths and confirm their aspirations and lead to further specialisation.

With this, the students will build on their ability to conceptualise and produce works of high standards to meet the changing needs of the global fashion environment.

Degree

Fully based on coursework, the curriculum teaches students the Design Process, Colour in Fashion and introduces them to Design and Visual Culture in the first year.

The second year sees students learn the commerce and technology in Fashion Designing, Innovations in Designing, Buying and Global Sourcing, Fashion Forecasting and Design and Visual Culture. The final year covers Fashion Design: portfolio and product realisation, design and visual culture research project.

Hands-on experience

The course directors believe that the students learn best through experience. This has been the philosophy since the onset of the school, leaving students with several industry projects, field trips and visits which get them better developed for their career in terms of both confidence and self-discipline.

The degree programme is directly awarded by Nottingham Trent University.

On successful completion of the degree programme, students will receive a globally recognised degree from Nottingham Trent University, Bachelor of Arts (Hons) fashion design, or Bachelor of Arts( Hons), fashion marketing and branding.

MDIS encourages and nurtures the talents of top academic students through MDIS Merit Scholarships. Students who have obtained first class / distinction can submit their scholarship applications once the governing council of MDIS makes the official announcement in 2014.

As well as honing their drawing, pattern-cutting and design skills, students will have picked up transferable skills that are useful in a wide range of careers. They will be used to meeting tight deadlines, coming up with ideas, working collaboratively and on their own initiative.

They will have developed good presentational and analytical skills and be able to manage their time.

Given these attributes, graduates from School of Fashion and Design can look forward to fulfilling careers in retails, art and design, fashion and textile design, costume design, visual merchandising, public relations for fashion houses, fashion illustration, as stylists and as fashion and design writers.

To take advantage of the growth in the fashion industry, graduates are open to the options available in Fashion Merchandising, Fashion Marketing , Fashion Buying. Fashion Photgraphy, Production Management, Visual styling and Visual presentations. The programmes have no examination and are completely assessed through course work.

Facilities on campus

The school of fashion is filled with facilities which inspire creative thoughts and ideas and encourage students to perform at each and every attempt.

From sewing machines to drawing boards, mannequins and various designs of the many students, the MDIS School of Fashion resembles the work area of an Italian fashion house. International students can choose to stay at the on-campus MDIS hostel.

They can also join the various clubs at MDIS which promote greater integration of international and local students and also stimulate better networking opportunities.

The Head of the School, Sherna Wadia, says, “The School of Fashion and Design has become a new force to be reckoned with in the design space in Singapore.”

In addition to the knowledge provided by the lecturers, the students gained a better understanding of the fashion industry through experiential learning via several projects or field trips with prestigious companies like Ducati, Louis Vuitton, Audi Fashion Week, Inverted Edge, Trivanity, Azelea and Jakarta Fashion Week.

As the year drew to an end, it was time for the students to give back to society and in collaboration with the NUS Medical Students, the school put on a fashion show modelled by children suffering from cancer.

Looking ahead, the school will continue to collaborate with members of the Industry to provide students with the diverse skill sets required to sustain a lifelong career in the fashion industry.”