The Fashion Apparel Design Study Program: ITHB’s Contribution to the Indonesian Creative Industry

Fashion has become an inseparable part of people’s life. The world of fashion has for long gone beyond the need to cover the body towards more complex functions. Fashion is currently a marker of a person’s identity, social class, culture, profession, gender, and lifestyle. People’s needs for fashion and accessories have increased significantly over the years. This is reflected in the rapid changes in fashion trends and businesses. Players keep on coming in and out of the fashion industry. To cater to these immense global needs of especially urban people, talents in fashion apparel design are increasingly needed.

Bright Career Prospect

As Indonesian Minister of Industry Saleh Husin underlined in the opening of the Indonesian Fashion Week 2016, the fashion industry has been a favorite subsector in the creative industry. According to the Creative Economy Study Team of the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy, in 2014 alone, the fashion industry contributed 28.29% to the GDP from the creative industry. The industry also absorbs the most workforce and shows the highest export growth (9.51%) compared to the other subsectors of the creative industry.

The government had devoted a special attention to boost the growth of the fashion industry. A number of national fashion events such as Indonesia Fashion Week, Jakarta Fashion Week, Jember Fashion Carnival, Jogja Fashion Week, Brightspot, and Trademark are organized on a regular basis. New local fashion brands and designers are introduced in these events each year.

As a center of the creative industry and member of UNESCO Creative City Network, Bandung has also given birth to young players in the fashion industry. More shoes, accessories, and bags brands have entered the market as more distribution stores and outlets are opened in all corners of the city. Bandung is blessed with young people with enormous creative powers. The creative city is also supported by a number educational institutions and courses in which people can study fashion design and industry. Unfortunately, however, there has not yet been a bachelor or undergraduate program in Bandung that can specifically meet the growing needs of fashion apparel design. At least, until recently.

To answer these needs, Harapan Bangsa Institute of Technology, previously known at the national level for the excellence of its Visual Communication Design Study Program, has just opened the first undergraduate (S1) Fashion Apparel Design study program in Indonesia. Why should there be such an undergraduate program? Why don’t we just rely on natural talents or non formal training courses?

A university-level program can produce creative human resources who not only are capable to produce high-quality fashion designs, but also have comprehensive business knowhow and skills that are crucial to succeed in the creative industry. Students, particularly those wishing to enter the creative business and industry will need to learn about fashion production and marketing.

The Fashion Apparel Design program at ITHB offers the following points of excellence :

  1. Academic curriculum that focuses on developing creativity and design skills in fashion business;
  2. Teaching staff with real professional experience in the fashion industry;
  3. Complete infrastructure and facilities and comfortable environment to optimize designing process in class.

The fact that ITHB Fashion Apparel Design is located in Bandung is another advantage that students can get. As one of Indonesia’s creative cities Bandung attracts many talented design professionals and experts to work in the city’s growing and expanding fashion industries. There, ITHB students can build network with other talents and learn directly from many fashion industries so they can be better equipped for their future careers.