Two graduates from the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) in Dubai redeployed their university education to pursue their lifelong passion for professional fashion design, deviating from traditional career paths related to their business and engineering degrees.
Mechanical engineering student Osama Mootassem and business management major Chrystel Anne Clasicas graduated from RIT Dubai in 2018 and have since created their own unique fashion brands, launching their brands in the height of the pandemic. global.
Osama and Chrystel Anne both believe their college experiences helped them get to where they are today. Osama says, “RIT allowed me to explore myself and this is part of what shaped me as an individual, extracurricular activities taught me skills like organization, teamwork and project management which I now use on a daily basis, and now here I am years later with my own brand of clothing.
For Chrystel Anne, her training in business has given her a concrete understanding of what it takes to be an entrepreneur. “It was during my entrepreneurship course, where we had to develop a business plan, that the idea of launching a label was born. After graduating, Chrystel Anne won a scholarship to the College of Fashion and Design in Dubai, where she surprised her peers with the business knowledge she gained through her business degree at RIT.
In 2020, undeterred by the onset of the pandemic, she launched her label, Chrystel Anne Fashion, which she describes as a zero-waste, body-positive luxury bespoke design. Having an immediate impact on the international scene, Chrystel Anne saw 15 of her pieces unveiled at New York Fashion Week in February, and will showcase more of her designs at the next edition of the event later this year.
Osama describes his clothing brand, nvr frgttn, as trendy street clothes with a twist. He explains: “My brand is all about inclusiveness and diversity, inspired by my growing environment in Abu Dhabi. The short term goal is to provide everyone with a fashion that will make them feel both confident and comfortable. My long term goal is to develop my brand into a platform large enough to showcase emerging talent. “