TORONTO – George Brown College is pleased to announce a total of $2.5 million in infrastructure funding for its Fashion Exchange, an innovative new facility purpose-built to revitalize the Canadian fashion industry. The latest round of this funding was announced today in Winnipeg, Manitoba by the Minister of Science and Sport, the Honourable Kirsty Duncan. Today’s funding is through the Canada Foundation for Innovation’s College Industry Innovation Fund’s (CIIF) awards and totals $960,981, matched earlier this year by the Ministry of Research, Innovation and Science and bolstered by industry in-kind support.
George Brown’s Fashion Exchange is a vibrant hub where fashion education, design, production, entrepreneurship and engagement come together under one roof at the college’s downtown campus. This award will support the expansion of research capabilities for the Fashion Exchange’s LIFT (Leading through Innovation in Fashion Technologies) research program.
“Returning fashion manufacturing to Canada requires access to skilled employees, local business support and a fresh model for production to capitalize on new technologies,” Marilyn McNeil-Morin, Director at the Fashion Exchange says. “The support provided by the Canada Foundation for Innovation allows us to reach more Ontario companies, moving new, innovative products to market faster and ultimately cultivating local, sustainable economic development.”
FX will allow Canadian apparel businesses to overcome technical, systemic, design and manufacturing challenges at all stages of the product lifecycle chain. FX will enable companies to adopt digital manufacturing technologies and approaches to design, and to manufacture products locally, moving new, innovative products to market faster. Fully aligned with provincial and national sustainable economic development policies and environmental regulations, FX supports industry transformation to not only enhance fashion, apparel and textile industry innovation and competitiveness, but also reduce social and environmental impacts. In addition, through integrated learning on applied research industry-led projects, the FX training program is committed to providing students with skills for each product lifecycle stage and producing highly qualified personnel for the Canadian workforce.
“Via this program of industry-focused applied research, FX will support Fashion 4.0—the reshoring of apparel manufacturing to Canada, digital technology adoption and sustainable close-looped manufacturing,” says Dawn Davidson, Associate Vice President of Research and Innovation at the college. “FX will contribute directly to local, sustainable economic development in Ontario while providing a model for innovation across Canada.”
About George Brown College Research and Innovation
Looking at industry, faculty and students as equal players in the innovation-to-market cycle, the Office of Research and Innovation at George Brown College empowers our partners to take part in economically and educationally meaningful projects and collaborations that enhance local innovation and community well-being. Matching our industry partners with faculty expertise, the Office of Research and Innovation operates as the single hub of access to highly qualified and skilled personnel, state-of-the-art facilities and funding.
About the George Brown College Fashion Exchange
George Brown College’s Fashion Exchange aims to model and foster innovative, ethical, and environmentally and socially sustainable production. FX is a vibrant hub where fashion education, design, production, entrepreneurship and engagement come together under one roof in the heart of downtown Toronto. FX brings together fashion educators, industry partners, community organizations, and fashion graduates to innovate for an increasingly sustainable, socially-conscious, and economically vibrant fashion industry.
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