Introducing a school for the creative industries, led by international art gallery MIMA, and Teesside University
From a young age, Airen Sopany dreamt of a career in fashion.
Clothes were one of her earliest passions and she loved to experiment by making outfits that blended her own style and personality.
Now settled in Middlesbrough and deep into her fashion and textiles studies at Teesside University, Airen is benefitting from MIMA School of Arts & Design’s industry-leading facilities and environment.
“The facilities and materials here are everything you need as a fashion student, and the campus is great,” Airen says.
“I chose MIMA School of Art & Design at Teesside University because I wanted to learn more and master my skills.”
The school prides itself on being uniquely placed to support creatives at all stages of their careers.
Whether starting out fresh from college or refuelling a passion mid-career, students will get the expert guidance they need among an inclusive and collaborative community that puts creativity first.
From climate change to social inequality, healthcare to housing, artists, media makers, journalists, performers, musicians, photographers, fashion, interiors, graphics and product designers apply their skills to address critical issues of our time.
Through working with professionals in the field, the school sets about preparing its students to stand out and make a difference in the working world.
Airen has kindly taken the time to talk us through her experience.
What has appealed to you most?
The staff here are always helpful and available when you need help. I’ve really enjoyed learning that there is more to fashion than sewing outfits, including fashion trends, forecasting and fashion culture.
My favourite module is where I get to develop my skills in fashion illustration.
How are the facilities on campus?
The library is great, it’s such a relaxing environment with quiet floors to study on your own, and a floor to work collaboratively when you have group work. Staff can help you with a range of issues too, I always go to them when I have a problem.
What is Middlesbrough like?
It’s a lovely town. I have felt welcomed by the community and it’s such a calm place to live and study.
Are you a member of any clubs or societies?
I have been a course rep since my second year and I have loved the experience. I get to speak to staff and my classmates about any problems or issues there might be, I really enjoy building relationships I wouldn’t have otherwise made.
What projects have you worked on?
In my first year we teamed up with local retailer Psyche to work on their Christmas window displays, with a sustainability theme. It was an exciting experience, getting to work with the company, classmates and University staff.
What skills have you gained?
The course has taught me new things about fashion that I was unaware of including fashion theories and histories. I have improved my illustration and computer-aided design skills, creating my own designs.
What would you like to achieve?
I hope to build a career in the fashion industry as I’m interested in designing, sewing, and illustrating.
How would you sum up your time at MIMA School of Art & Design at Teesside University so far?
The staff and facilities are excellent, especially the fashion and textiles studios. The modules are expansive and cover a range of topics. The friends you make along the way stay with you, it’s an amazing experience.