Head of Placements & Employability
Academic and professional qualifications
As Faculty Curriculum Co-ordinator, my commitment to the University is to deliver cross-course collaborative synergies, employability, industry participation and sponsorship. Through my experience and forward thinking, I continue to inspire students and bridge the gap from education to industry, bringing together Fashion, Events, Hospitality, Tourism and Nutritional Sciences (Food). These industries automatically link together, and the students are the creative drivers of the future – a synergy of ‘LIFESTYLE’ in motion.
I am also involved in the supervision of both undergraduate projects and postgraduate research students. From 2006 - 2013, I have been placement manager, and continue to increase the fashion industry’s awareness for student placements by my sheer passion, drive, and commitment to see all students succeed, and have made this a priority in providing a quality workforce for the industry, not just for the UK market but also overseas.
Ambitious, energetic, and passionate about the ever-changing fashion industry I strive to inspire the future generation through my synergy to realise their futures.
I graduated from Hollings (Manchester Polytechnic in 1981) with a City and Guilds Part 1 and 2 in Tailoring, and a Diploma in Clothing and Manufacture, achieving distinction in all areas. I returned 19 years later from my role as Head Designer for numerous manufacturing companies to teach at Hollings (MMU) as an Associate Lecturer in 2000. My industry experience took full circle and I became a full time Senior Lecturer in 2006, specialising in Fashion Design and Product Development.
Projects and initiatives
For the past decade, I have organised the department’s annual fashion show/events days since 2002, and continue to take an active lead role with many projects in the department including Graduate Fashion Week, and Vogue’s Big Fashion Night Out. I have worked on various enterprise and community wide projects where students undertake extra curriculum activities and has worked alongside colleagues to implement these into teaching units. I have travelled to USA (New York, California), China (Shanghai), Sri Lanka, India (New Delhi), and Japan (Tokyo) attending conferences, promoting Hollings Faculty, and working on collaborative projects.
Consultancy and advisory roles
I have worked in the clothing industry from 1981-2002 as Head Designer for numerous enterprise partnerships, whilst expanding freelance consultancy work, and have managed a large portfolio of UK High Street multiple retailers, including Marks and Spencer’s, providing ladieswear tailoring and outerwear collections.
Media appearances or involvement
Since 2004, I have actively been involved with media appearances for regional TV and BBC Radio, regularly consulting on ‘Fashion History’ and also as a ’Style Advisor’ for a weekly ‘Retail Therapy Show’. I love vintage fashion, collecting artefacts from the 1920’s, and am inspired by the leading fashion innovators of 20th Century; Poiret, Chanel, Dior, and Schiaparelli.
Prizes and awards
- MSc Clothing Product Development
- Having studied for an MSc in Clothing Product Development in 2007, I gained a distinction and my dissertation research focused on the ‘Role of the Personal Shopper for the 40-60 Consumer’.
Membership of professional associations
- Textiles Institute
My areas of research interests include ‘History of Costume Post 17th Century’ and in particular how the power of fashion has developed and how we interpret the classic designs of past into modern garments of today through innovative interpretation. I would like to continue to develop national and international links that bring together Events, Fashion, Hospitality, Tourism and Nutritional Sciences and see where the future lies through student’s eyes.
February 2016 saw the launch of The Big Issue 4: Luxury Hollings Faculty Conference in which the theme of luxury was discussed.
"What Luxury means today is changing rapidly as a result of technological innovation, social change and the challenge of sustainability. Perhaps in the future, the greatest luxury will be time."
Our key note speakers this year included:
LS: N Global, Trend Source team Peter Firth and Victoria Buchanan
Simone Cipriani, Head, Ethical Fashion Initiative of The International Trade Centre, a joint agency of the United Nations and World Trade Organization
Thomas Kowalski, Head of Talent Acquisition, Kering Group
Guillaume d Piédoüe ‘Eyes on Talent’
Rebecca Robins, Director, EMEA & LatAm at Interbrand and co-author of Meta-luxury – in conversation with George Bouvier (Academic)
Rob Warner, Vice President Lulu Lemon
Liz Taylor, Director Taylor Lynn Corporation – Events Organiser
Adrian Ellis, General Manager Lowry Hotel Manchester
Pablo Flack and David Waddington who co-own Hoi Polloi and its sister restaurant Bistrotheque (London) in conversation with Hazel Robinson (Academic)
Herz, CE., 2020. 'Portfolio of Research Plan'.
Manchester Fashion Institute
Manchester Metropolitan University
Manchester M15 6BG
Term Time availability: 09:00am -17:00pm Monday to Thursday, Friday available by phone or email as above.