Twenty emerging, mid-career Nigerian fashion designers have been selected to participate in the International Visitors Leadership Programme, IVLP, the premier professional exchange programme of the U.S. Department of State.

The virtual IVLP project titled, “Promoting Economic Growth and Trade in the Fashion Industry,” will offer a professional and cultural exchange opportunity on topics including current trends and successful business practices in the U.S. fashion industry and the practicalities of marketing and promoting African designs in the United States.

U.S. Consulate Public Affairs Officer, Stephen Ibelli explained that the IVLP project seeks to promote economic growth and trade in the fashion industry by empowering local fashion designers to not only thrive in Nigeria’s fashion industry but also to prepare for the global fashion marketplace.

“With growing artistic, sports, film, and music ties between Nigeria and the United States, the goal of this IVLP project is to further deepen Nigerian and American ties by adding fashion as another area of growing connectivity between our two countries,” Ibelli noted. “We are excited to provide fashion designers from Nigeria with this unique opportunity to connect with their U.S. counterparts. This is part of our strategic outreach to Nigeria’s creative industry, by strengthening economic ties through culture and fashion.”

Over the course of the three-week programme, participants will gain valuable insights from engaging with U.S. fashion designers, manufacturers and consumers.  In addition, participants will explore and enrich their knowledge of entrepreneurship, business development and innovation in the U.S. fashion industry.