Romsey and Southampton North MP Caroline Noakes has visited our BA (Hons) Fashion course to speak to students about diversity in fashion design.

Caroline is one of Parliament’s best known advocates on body image, and the related subjects of eating disorders and nutrition. She leads as Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Body Image.

“The greatest bit for me was talking to some of the students about how they’re reflecting diversity in their work, certainly those who are doing it as their final major project. It’s really great to see their passion and their enthusiasm. For instance students are collaborating with someone with learning difficulties to make a childrenswear collection, or focusing on plus size. We had a really interesting discussion on how you even define and describe plus size. It’s great to see a University putting some of the bigger design challenges into practice.

 For me, it’s great to be able to point to a University and say actually if you want to see where this is being encouraged and fostered, then look at AUB. If you want to follow an example, then here’s where it works.

 The public are 50 foot ahead of the fashion industry. We all want to see diversity on the catwalk, but the fashion industry is still behind on that, and I think it’s marvellous that there is a University that is really prepared to take that on and challenge it.”