Education

Fashion and Business Education

  • FIT Design Entrepreneurs
    • A free, intensive “mini-MBA” program for New York City–based designers who have launched their own labels.
  • FastTrac
    • A series of free entrepreneurship courses for aspiring and established entrepreneurs throughout New York City.
  • NYC Online Business Education
    • Online business courses to guide NYC entrepreneurs through each step to start, operate, and grow a business.
  • Business Outreach Centers
    • Individualized, comprehensive guidance in obtaining financial, marketing, management, technology, and legal services.
  • 10,000 Small Businesses
    • Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businessesprovides greater access to education, capital, and business support services.
  • SCORE at SIBL
    • In-depth business counseling for business owners and small businesses, providing assistance with starting a business, writing a business plan, and helping successful firms in planning for expansion at the New York Public Library’s Science, Industry, and Business Library (SIBL) branch.
  • NYC Resource Guide for Immigrant Entrepreneurs
    • This guide offers step-by-step advice for immigrant entrepreneurs planning, launching, or growing a small business.
  • PowerUP! (Brooklyn)
    • Turn your business idea into a reality with help from the library and you may win $20,000 in start-up capital. Entrepreneurs throughout Brooklyn are eligible to participate.
  • StartUP! Business Plan Competition (Queens)
    • The competition gives emerging entrepreneurs in Queens the opportunity to strengthen their business knowledge, learn about business trends, gain insights about starting and growing a business, and have a chance to win grants worth up to $10,000 in funding and services.
  • New York StartUP! Business Plan Competition (Manhattan, The Bronx, Staten Island)
    • Annual New York StartUP! Business Plan Competition for New York–based startup entrepreneurs. Entrants can win $15,000 to start their business, as well as gain practical insights about starting and growing a business.
  • Grow with Google New York City Learning Center
    • The center offers free digital skills training to all New Yorkers, offering workshops, one-to-one coaching sessions, and community events.

Fashion Universities/Programs

Mentorship

  • WE Connect Mentors
    • Successful women entrepreneurs share their expertise and answer your business questions during weekly in-person sessions.
  • Elaine Gold Launch Pad
    • Supports early-emerging and young design talent and aspirational entrepreneurs, and encourages creativity within technology, sustainability, and innovation through six months of mentorship and milestone-based awards.
  • Tory Burch Foundation Fellows Program
    • Designed for women entrepreneurs, the program provides education, connections, and community support to grow your business.

 

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Manufacturing

Grants

Facilities

  • Futureworks Makerspace
    • Affordable access to a state-of-the-art prototyping facility, including a sewing area and jewelry corner.
  • Futureworks Shops
    • A network of 11 fabrication studios across the city that provide affordable access to various types of equipment and coworking space.

Manufacturing / Supplier Directories

Funding

Funding Opportunities

  • WE Fund Crowd
    • Any woman in New York can apply for a zero-interest loan of up to $10,000 on Kiva’s crowdfunding platform, and the City will fund the first 10 percent of the money she needs—lending with no fees, no interest, and no minimum credit score.
  • WE Fund Growth
    • Supports women who need capital to expand their businesses! The City is partnering with local lending institutions to increase the chance of getting financing.
  • Venture Capital Investors in NYC
    • NYC’s extensive list of investors in New York City with investment focuses that include fashion, lifestyle, and retailing and distribution, among others.
  • CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund
    • Awards help emerging American design talent further develop their business in addition to receiving mentorship from an esteemed group of industry professionals.
  • Global NY Grant Fund
    • Open to New York State companies and nonprofit organizations seeking to create or expand direct exports.
  • Global NY Loan Fund
    • Loans of up to $500,000 are available for companies to purchase equipment and inventory needed to deliver on export-related contracts and provide working capital to support foreign accounts receivable.
  • State Trade Expansion Program
    • Grants for small and medium businesses to increase the number of businesses entering the export market, and to increase the value of exports for businesses that currently export.

Scholarships

  • CFDA Scholarship Program
    • Provides two scholarships of $25,000 to exemplary student talent across diverse design specializations.
  • Geoffrey Beene Design Scholarship Award
    • The award challenges students to look beyond conventional design and industry approaches in order to advance the art form of fashion by investigating experimentation of process, material, and form.
  • The Liz Claiborne Design Scholarship Award
    • This $25,000 design award invites undergraduate fashion students to create a signature fashion collection.
  • Kenneth Cole Footwear Innovation Award
    • A one-year design fellowship opportunity supported by an annual stipend of $50,000, offered to fashion graduates combining design with social consciousness.
  • Eileen Fisher Social Innovator Award
    • Provides immersive access to specialized knowledge, skills, resources, and mentorship to three post-graduates through year-long rotational placements at Eileen Fisher. Each Innovator receives a stipend of $50,000.

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Retail & Marketing

Sustainability

  • ReFashion Week NYC
    • Fashion shows, shopping events, clothing swaps, and styling competitions that spark conversations about how residents, nonprofits, and businesses can create solutions to reduce textile waste.
  • refashionNYC
    • Free and convenient clothing donation service for apartment, office, and commercial buildings.
  • NYC Textile Map
    • Find the nearest drop-off bin, takeback program, textile recycling location, and more.
  • Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Circular Economy Learning Hub
    • Explore the circular economy business model and see real-world examples. Access information on how to make your company more circular and what circular design really means.
  • CFDA Guide to Sustainable Strategies
    • Provides a “how to” for sustainable fashion with a focus on taking the complex idea of sustainability and simplifying it into clear, digestible resources and actions.
  • Sustainable Strategies Toolkit
    • Aims to visualize the mapping and framing of sustainability priorities. It is intended to facilitate in diagnostics and provide users with step-by-step guidance in the creation of strategic blueprints.

Technology

  • The New York Fashion Tech Lab
    • Delivers a platform for collaboration between major fashion retailers and the startup community. The lab supports women-led companies that have developed innovations at the intersection of fashion, retail, and technology.
  • XRC labs
    • Brings together entrepreneurs, investors, brands, and retailers to foster rapid innovation and unlock new opportunities in retail.

 

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