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FIT's 2014 Summer Institute: Sustainability in Fashion and Textiles Underscores College_s Commitment to Sustainability

Sustainability has become part of the DNA of the Fashion Institute of Technology, from programs and course offerings and an annual Sustainable Business and Design Conference to the installation of green roofs and an award-winning natural dye garden. Its no surprise, then, that the colleges Summer Institute is dedicated to Sustainability in Fashion and Textiles, historically an environmentally challenging sector of the fashion industry. The Summer Institute will take place at FIT from June 16 through June 19.

Designed for industry professionals and academics who want to broaden their understanding of sustainability and how to support its integration into the industry, this intensive, four-day series of lectures, discussions, site visits, and hands-on workshops is important for designers, technologists, and educators, as well as those seeking greater business and professional knowledge.

Thought leaders in the field will provide current information, experiences, and fresh perspectives. Sessions will have a broad-based focus on the business of fashion and sustainability from both corporate and small- and medium-sized companies perspectives, giving participants from all areas of the fashion and textile industry an opportunity to deepen their knowledge and expand their outlook. A diverse range of offerings allows participants to choose workshops best suited to their own interests. Attendees will leave with a new understanding of a vibrant industry that stands at the intersection of design, technology, and business.

For a full list of courses and details, visit fitnyc.edu/summerinstitute.

Some suggested sessions:

Life Cycle Assessment: Unlocking the Mystery
Debera Johnson, executive director, Center for Sustainable Design Strategies, Pratt Institute   
This interactive workshop introduces the concept of measuring the environmental impact of products through the use of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA). The process and tools for completing an LCA will be introduced, and a case study of a product will be analyzed. Students will create a basic Life Cycle Assessment from an existing product and consider strategies to reduce its environmental impact.

Panel: Sustainable Fibers in the Textile Supply Chain
Moderator: Jeffrey Silberman, professor, Textile Development and Marketing, FIT
Panelists: Tricia Carey, senior merchandising manager, Lenzing Fibers; Kater Hake, vice president of agricultural and environmental research, Cotton Inc.; Jean Hegedus, global director, Invista Denim; and Mark Messura, senior vice president in the global supply chain marketing division, Cotton, Inc. The panelists discuss how their organizations are approaching sustainability in the supply chain, from point of origin to retail. Spinning, fabric formation, wet processing, manufacturing, retail positioning, and communication strategy will be covered.

Zero-Waste Lab
Timo Rissanen, assistant professor, Fashion Studies and Sustainability, Parsons
This laboratory presents the concept and practice of zero-waste cutting, including a wide variety of zero-waste cutting and design techniques. A demonstration provides a hands-on example of how to design specifically for zero-waste cutting, rather than being restricted by it. This system challenges the traditional concept of design by requiring pattern cutting to be foremost in mind when designing, as opposed to simply being the means to achieving an effect.

Deconstruct Reconstruct Lab

Karina Kallio, owner, Kallio Childrens Clothing
A brief overview of designers working with pre- and post-consumer textile and garment waste is presented, followed by a hands-on demonstration. The lab includes how to work with diverse materials, making a color and textural whole from varied sources, and how to deconstruct and reimagine damaged clothing into new designs.

About FIT
The Fashion Institute of Technology, a college of the State University of New York, has been a leader in career education in art, design, business, and technology for 70 years. With a curriculum that provides a singular blend of hands-on, practical experience, classroom study, and a firm grounding in the liberal arts, FIT offers a wide range of outstanding programs that are affordable and relevant to today's rapidly changing industries. Internationally renowned, FIT draws on its New York City location to provide a vibrant, creative community in which to learn. The college offers more than 45 majors and grants AAS, BFA, BS, MA, MFA, and MPS degrees, preparing students for professional success and leadership in the global marketplace.