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UKFT’s MADE IT 2021/22 students selected for production internships


Five university design students have been selected to undertake paid internships at UK fashion and textile businesses including designer brands Victoria Beckham and Mackintosh, embroidery specialist Hand & Lock, dyeing innovator Colorfix and Scottish manufacturer Alexander Manufacturing, as part of UKFT’s MADE IT scheme.

Students have been selected from the five participating universities on this year’s MADE IT programme: The University of Huddersfield, Istituto Marangoni, University of the Arts London, Nottingham Trent University and Heriot Watt University.

UKFT held a production and sourcing masterclass for fashion and textile design students at each university to promote the importance of production and sourcing within a rounded fashion education and to highlight the breadth of job opportunities across the supply chain. The sessions also highlighted the rich manufacturing expertise and specialisms within the UK.
Following the masterclasses, students took part in a production-focused project and UKFT selected winners to undertake the two-month internship scheme.

Elliot Barlow, UKFT’s manufacturing consultant, said: “The students we selected displayed innovative and forward thinking views on what makes production, design and construction important when they’re creating. The students will all benefit from their experiences within the industry, whether they decide to take up one of the many opportunities that exist in the UK fashion and textile production sector or take that experience into a design role in future, we know this experience will be invaluable in furthering their careers and will have an impact on the future of the industry overall. We look forward to following their journeys through the internship process and will share their findings for more students to benefit from.”

The MADE IT students awarded internships

  • Sumeya Ahmed, a 2nd year student on the BA Fashion Design & Development course at University of the Arts London, is undertaking an internship at Victoria Beckham.
  • Abbie Shelton, a 2nd year student on the BA Textile Design course at Nottingham Trent University, is undertaking an internship at Colorfix (pictured above).
  • Rebecca King, a 3rd year student on the BA Fashion Design course at Heriot Watt University is undertaking an internship at Alexander Manufacturing.
  • Lucrezia Grazioli, a 2nd year student on the BA Fashion Design course at Istituto Marangoni will start an internship at Mackintosh in September.
  • Hannah Reid, a 2nd year student on the BA Fashion Design with Textiles course at The University of Huddersfield, will start an internship at Hand & Lock in January 2023.

A lasting legacy

Following the internships, UKFT will be working with students and employers to develop two sets of publicly available collateral that aim to raise the quality and expectations of internships across the industry:

  • Quality Internship collateral for students with the aim of showing them what a quality internship should look like.
  • Quality Internship collateral for employers including frameworks for good quality delivery of an internship, example schemes of work and positive case studies.

Supporting UK manufacturing

UKFT’s MADE IT campaign is generously supported by The Clothworkers’ Company and CapitB. It is part of UKFT’s broader aim of supporting the future of the UK manufacturing sector, which includes running projects to support growth and innovation, promoting and matchmaking businesses and ensuring that the next generation of skilled people entering the sector are being trained to the highest level.