Chairperson, International Manufacturing & Product Development, The Business of Denim
Department Chair Amanda Starling’s career has been evenly split between the apparel industry and education for 30 years. Prior to joining FIDM in 2001, Amanda specialized in product development and production for private labels, starting at a San Diego swimwear label, and moving to Los Angeles to oversee private label for clients like JCPenney and WalMart. At Cass Industries, the company she founded, she ran product design and production for Penneys and other big brands. The Advanced Study programs under her direction reflect her ongoing involvement in the industry.
What makes the Advanced Study programs unique?
The structure of programs like The Business of Denim is for all the work and travel to point towards the final project, where students present their ideas to industry in a public exhibition. At the end of the process, students not only have a great portfolio, they truly understand how the business works.
How has private label evolved?
Now every big department store from Nordstrom to Target has its own private label, which means lots of in-house jobs for FIDM grads. Creative collaborations across the industry are more prevalent—like Target with an upscale brand like Lily Pulitzer or Nike with a denim brand. It’s an exciting time!
Please Note: The information contained herein was confirmed at the time of original publication.