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De Montfort ramps up technical content

De Montfort University has reiterated its commitment to grass-roots manufacturing skills with the addition of more technical content on its various fashion and product design courses, following the closure of its Fashion Technology BSc course.

De Montfort, which closed its Fashion Technology degree to new students in 2010 and will produce its final graduates in 2013 (as reported in Drapers, March 18), said it had created a new technical route on its Contour Design programme - the UK’s top lingerie design degree.

Dr Julie King, head of De Montfort’s fashion and textiles department, said “imminent revalidations” for its Retail Buying and Textile Design programmes would further increase their technical content.

She added: “More than half of the content of our Fashion Design programme is, and always has been, purely technical.”

De Montfort has been at the centre of the storm surrounding Drapers’ Save Our Skills (SOS) campaign, which was launched last month following the revelation De Montfort had closed its Fashion Technology degree due to lack of funding.

King hit back at criticism levelled at the college and said only 6% (14) of the fashion department’s graduates had come from the Fashion Technology course but that De Montfort graduates were employed in technical roles at leading fashion businesses such as Abecrombie & Fitch, French Connection, Reiss, Donna Karan, Next and Nicole Farhi.

She added: “We continue to deliver strong technical skills to our students and provide the UK and global clothing and textile industry with the graduates it requires to meet today’s market standards.”

For more on the Save Our Skills campaign, go to www.drapersonline.com

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