Kangan Institute has teamed up with the Council of Textile and Fashion Industries of Australia (TFIA) and the Australian Government - AusIndustry on a new project launched on 30th March 2012.
The $5m Textile and Fashion Hub Project aims to provide small to medium business, of which make up the majority of the textiles, clothing and footwear (TCF) sector, with access to workplace learning programs that are adaptive, contemporary and tailored to their current and long-term needs.
Industry participants will be able to access training, resources, networking opportunities and equipment at a new state-of-the-art facility located at the Richmond campus.
Parliamentary Secretary for Industry and Innovation Mark Dreyfus highlights that the project focuses on innovative product development and increase of knowledge.
"This, in turn, will foster a highly creative, sustainable and internationally competitive Textile Clothing and Footwear sector," he said.
"I'm pleased that the Australian Government's Textile, Clothing and Footwear Strategic Capability Program, administered by AusIndustry, has played a role in establishing this very important strategic hub by providing funding of over $2.7 million."
Kangan Institute's Centre of Fashion Manager Odile Higgins said the partnership ensures all participants gain the most current, industry-relevant skills to contribute to the success and growth of the Australian TCF sector.
"While many RTOs design the course first and then attract the students, we're taking our cue from industry via the TFIA's leadership, which will give us a much more industry focused approach to teaching," she said.
"By working closely with industry experts to develop the content of our courses, our students will be developing skills and knowledge required to work within local and niche markets."
Textile and Fashion Hub Strategic Manager Julia Haselhorst also shared that the new partnership responds to pressing industry needs in the face of today's tough economic climate.
"86% of the TCF industry is made up of small to medium enterprises without a network to support them and very little funding being allocated to assist them. So the TFIA felt it was vital to create access to space, equipment, connections, knowledge, experience and investment to help grow these businesses."
The new facility features the latest equipment for sampling development and research, including digital printing, whole garment and seamless knitting and 3-D body scanning machines as well as a CAD room for pattern making.
The Textile and Fashion Hub Project will also connect people, places and equipment through a digital network and events allowing participants in regional centres and capital cities to get involved.
(Photos credit: Johannes Wosilat, www.wosilat.com)