In an effort to inspire the next generation of creatives who will lead the $55 billion global sneaker industry to continued greatness, Complex is partnering with the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) for a unique education experience, which Kick'n It for a Cause founder Chris “COSeezy” Strachan announced during a sit down with Steph Curry.
Sneaker Essentials is an online education program exploring every possible aspect of the industry, from design to advertising to retail. The Qubed Education-developed program consists of six courses totaling 30 hours. Complex personalities, FIT staffers, and other proven industry veterans (i.e. Nike and Adidas contributors) will lead the learning process.
"Complex has always been at the forefront of sneaker culture, and we also pride ourselves on being inclusive and opening doors for creative people," Jack Erwin, Complex's GM of Content, explained. "Sneaker Essentials provides a chance for passionate learners to hear directly from true leaders in the sneaker media industry, including Joe La Puma, Gerald Flores, and Richard Lopez." Other instructors will include Nice Kicks creative director Nick DePaula, Stephen Curry 30 Inc. Chief Marketing Officer Jeron Smith, and more.
Sarah Mullins, chair of FIT's Accessories Design program, added that Sneaker Essentials was built to "translate that passion for sneakers into real-world knowledge and skills that open doors to meaningful career pathways." Once a student wraps the program—which is a part of FIT's Center for Continuing and Professional Studies—they will be awarded a certificate of completion.
The inaugural group of Sneaker Essentials students will be admitted in April. In partnership with nonprofit Kick'n It for a Cause, Qubed will be handing out scholarships to select students in disadvantaged situations. More info can be found here.