With three out of five fast fashion garments ending up in landfill within a year of purchase and synthetic garments contributing to a third of all microplastics in the ocean, the fashion industry is a large contributor to waste and has a significant negative environmental impact.
Megan Shafizadeh is a second-year nursing student who recognises the environmental and financial impact of fast fashion. In her successful application for the Julia Gillard Women in Leadership Scholarship, awarded to a commencing undergraduate student who has shown commitment to community service, leadership and a vision for change, Megan wrote about her vision of a Curtin Closet, an on-campus thrift shop.
Megan has recently partnered with the Equal Slice team from the John Curtin Leadership Academy (JCLA) to tackle the challenge of sustainable fashion for the future, and explore the viability of the Curtin Closet initiative.
For Equal Slice team members, Dylan Warlik, Christiana Hitchman and Janelle-Rose Sullivan, this project has provided an opportunity to develop valuable skills including project management, communication, and stakeholder engagement. By collaborating with fellow students and Curtin staff to drive future sustainability initiatives on campus, the group feel they are working to create positive change within the Curtin community, as well as educating and raising awareness of the negative impacts of fast fashion.
The recent Good Sammy pop-up store and sustainable fashion workshops held on campus provided the chance for the Equal Slice team to explore student interest in having an ongoing thrift store at Curtin. Dylan, Christiana and Janelle-Rose are hoping to gather insights into what a future store would need to consider to attract customers. The team will use these insights to inform a business model report for Megan, who then aims to take the Curtin Closet concept to more Curtin stakeholders and turn this vision into reality.
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