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Tuesday 19 August 2014

Fashion scholar visits from China

As part of Southampton Solent University’s commitment to attracting top academic talent from around the world, the staff and students at the Solent School of Fashion are delighted to be hosting visiting scholar Yi Zhu.

Taking temporary leave from her post as a lecturer at the prestigious Donghua University in Shanghai, Yi Zhu will be bringing over 15 years of academic experience to Solent’s School of Fashion.

Budding fashion scholars might already be familiar with Yi Zhu’s work. She has authored several books including ‘Apparel Making and Techniques’ and ‘Clothes Production Management’, and has contributed to a number of peer-reviewed publications.

However, it isn’t just Yi Zhu’s academic experience that students and staff will benefit from – she has also had a distinguished career within the industry itself. After graduating in fashion design at Donghua in 1992, Yi worked in a number of fashion roles including design, marketing and operations. She also holds five innovative patents – three for fabrics containing pearl and two for unique pattern design.

When asked to comment on her transition into an English university, Yi Zhu said:

“I am very happy to have the opportunity to converse and exchange ideas with like-minded people here in the UK. I have always been interested to come and experience the British academic and fashion life. (Solent) University has a lot of energy and dynamism, so I was pleased to be able to come here to study.”

Yi Zhu’s arrival at Solent is yet another sign of the Chinese government’s increased engagement with the creative industries; in recent years the government has put various measures and policies in place to encourage design and inventiveness, and strengthened protection for the authors of original creative works.

The Shanghai Free Trade Zone, a scheme designed to encourage the continued development of creative industries in China, is another example of this engagement.  Part of the scheme involves the sponsorship of academics and industry leaders like Yi Zhu, giving them the chance to visit and learn from other cultures.

To find out more about Southampton Solent University’s School of Fashion and the courses on offer, be sure to take a look at the undergraduate fashion degrees page.