This summer, the Study Abroad program resumed for FIT students seeking an educational experience off American soil after two years of the program being paused during the height of the pandemic.
On June 4, 18 students boarded a flight from JFK airport to Italy for a course in International Italian Product Development and be immersed in an educational experience for three weeks. The course consists of field studies in the main Italian textile regions of Biella, Bergamo, and Como and learn how high-quality fabrics are designed, produced and marketed globally for the use in apparel. It also gives them the opportunity to develop international contacts and learn safe travel skills.
Salvatore Giardina, the professor who held the course, explains how this will benefit them in the real world. “Many companies work tirelessly to make a product look expensive by using high quality fabrics,” said Giardina. “[By taking this course], you can help explain how and why certain fabrics were chosen. Moreover, when in conversation, as an assistant with colleagues or customers, they can say, ‘When I was visiting one of the mills in Albini, I learned about their weaving, designing, finishing, and marketing, etc.'”
Giardina continues, “On-site visits will put the student at a clear advantage over the existing pool of assistants in any apparel company. Visiting a mill is a company perk that might only happen after the fourth or fifth year of employment. Our students visited three of the most prestigious mills in Italy.” One student describes her experience in this video.
Here are a few highlights from a slideshow of images taken throughout the duration of the course.
Learn what courses are offered in FIT’s short-term summer and winter abroad programs. For the winter session, the deadline is September 22, 2022.
Play an interview with Sal Giardina and student Kushbu Jivan on the The Italian Hour podcast about the Study Abroad program in Italy from this summer.