Working in the sneaker industry is a dream job for anyone who has a passion for footwear. Figuring out how to break into the game is not as easy as it seems. You can’t just say, “I love sneakers,” and expect to land yourself a job at Nike or Adidas overnight. It’s going to take hard work, expertise, a bit of luck, and possibly an education. If you want to learn everything at once -- from breaking into sneaker media, design, retail, and the culture -- the Fashion Institute of Technology’s Sneaker Essentials course is the place to go.
In collaboration with Complex, FIT has put together a course that allows you to “Explore all angles of the sneaker business – from design through sale – leaders from across the sneaker world. The course just doesn't focus on one aspect of sneakers, rather it touches on all elements: culture, design, manufacturing and production, distribution and retail, brand strategy and marketing, and media.
Rather than have one professor create the course curriculum and text material, FIT reached out to a wide spectrum of people involved in various aspect of the industry. Included in the bunch are ESPN’s Nick DePaula, Complex’s Joe La Puma, Russ Bengtson, Rime sneaker boutique owner Susan Boyle, StockX CEO Josh Luber, Stadium Goods CEO and co-founder John McPheters, Nike Knit Innovator Toraya, Oscar Castillo of Modern Notoriety, and the original Full Size Run crew of Rich “MaZe” Lopez, Brendan Dunne, and yours truly.
The online course consists of over 45 on-demand videos and helps the students grow their sneaker knowledge through taking part in self-paced projects that give them a grasp of the work they’ll be asked to do in their future careers. The program is broken down into six different courses, with each other being between four and five hours themselves. Completion of the course will also result in an official FIT certificate.
There’s no exact science into working in the sneaker industry. Many of the people who have given their insights to this course broke into working in footwear through various backgrounds. But the industry has grown a lot since many people got their starts, and learning what made them successful will only help you achieve your goals.
To find out more information on Sneaker Essentials and register for the course, visit the site here. New courses are launched every two weeks, with the Sneaker Intro and History and Design classes already live. Applications are now open.