Tuesday 26 July 2016

LIFESTYLE || CLASS OF 2016 - Fashion Brand Management Degree

After a lot of blood, sweat and tears, well mainly just tears, I’ve graduated from UCLan (University of Central Lancashire) with a degree in Fashion Brand Management. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous for graduation day, but I can safely say it was the proudest day of my life so far. If I could bottle the feelings I had that day and sell them I'd be a millionaire. It was a day where I felt overwhelmed with happiness. Finally, all the hard work has paid off and my dreams can begin. 

"Be strong in your core beliefs and be ready to reinvent yourselves throughout life,"
 Professor Mike Thomas ‪@UCLan 

There is a lot of misconception around fashion degrees. I personally feel that a lot of people dumb them down and think they are simple degrees to obtain. This couldn’t be any further from the truth. At the end of the day, a degree is a degree. Universities don’t go out giving them to just anyone. All degrees require a lot of hard work, no matter what the subject field someone is studying. Fashion degrees, especially Fashion Brand Management / Promotion course are very broad and cover a lot within the industry: 
Fashion Promotion
Fashion Retail
PR & Media
Creative Marketing
Creative Computer Aided Design (Adobe)
Fashion Image
Social Media
Promotion and Campaigns
Fashion Promotion in Practice (Industry-Initiated Projects)
Preparation for Industry
Photography, Moving Image and Multi-Media Design
Fashion Promotion Portfolio

As you can see the course isn’t fundamentally just about fashion or ‘clothes’ as people often ask me.  It’s a very in-depth creative course that covers all aspects of the industry. 

“I want you to keep pushing forward. Just keep pushing forward. And I want you to reach out and ask for help. I know your teachers tell you that all the time, but please understand that no one gets through college—or life, for that matter—alone. No one. I certainly didn’t.”  Michelle Obama

Asking for help is something I resisted in the first year of my degree, mainly because I struggle with negative feedback. As my course was 80% creative, you’ve got to understand that not everyone is going to like or get your ideas.  I definitely toughened up by the third year, taking negative feedback still isn’t my strong point, but I know how to take the positives from it and go away and improve. This change in mindset was mainly down to my tutor. I’ve learnt that asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness and it doesn’t mean you’re not good enough. 
Future Plan 
From doing this degree, I’ve found my strengths, weakness and what I’m passionate about. If you’ve followed me for a while you’ll know my passion is blogging and social media.  I’ve decided seen as though I’ve got no major responsibilities as I’m still only 21im going to put all my time into something that has always been a dream and an ambition of mine which is setting up my own business. From a young age, I’ve always wanted to be an entrepreneur, since watching ‘The Apprentice’ with Alan Sugar, he’s always been an idol to me. 

So I’ve taken the plunge and set up my own sole trader business, specialising in social media. The basics of the business is offering my knowledge and help to independent business as a form of consultancy service around social media.  I’m going to do a whole blog post so keep your eye peeled. Find out my on my business Instagram page 

I’m also going to take this time to work more on my blog and freelancing work. I’ve just landed myself a column in a North East lifestyle magazine, which will be promoting my blog monthly. I’ll also be going into more lifestyle posts on my blog. 

Final words of advice if you’re looking to do a fashion promotion degree. 

- Self-promote, LinkedIn will become your new Facebook
-  Be prepared to work for free. Internships are a must (I did 3!) which means long hours and sometimes your work goes completely unnoticed, that’s just how it is and you have to get used to it pretty fast. 
-    Be ready to spend the majority of your student loan on printing and props from your brief. 
-    Back up your work. THIS IS A MUST 
-    Time management is key. Deadlines are deadlines for a reason, you can pretty much forget what sleep is for the next 3 years. 
-    Be original, no one likes a copy. 
'To live a creative life, we must lose the fear of being wrong.'
Ellie Rees x 


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