Staff Profile

Profile: Sophie Johnson, Lecturer, BA (Hons) Fashion Business and Promotion

sophie johnson blog

Where and what did you study?
I have come full circle in my career as I actually studied the course I now lecture, BA (Hons) Fashion Business and Promotion, previously known as Fashion Retail Management at Birmingham City University. It has been six years since I graduated so it’s really great to see how the course has evolved and remains at the forefront of developments within the industry. It also gives me a great understanding of being both a student and lecturer on the course, which really helps me engage with our students, as I can literally say I was once in their shoes.

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What are your career highlights?
I very quickly set up my own business after graduating and became the Director of MAD PR. I had a whirlwind three years in London running the company; there are so many career highlights to recall. I remember crying when I opened the Daily Mail to see Katy Perry was wearing a dress I sent her. I’ve been to some great celebrity parties and events such as the Fabulous Fashion Awards. I used to regularly dress reality star celebrities and work with the styling teams for TOWIE, X Factor and Take Me Out . I will also never forget the charity event work I did with The Prince’s Trust where I took on a whole new challenge of arranging a celebrity football match.

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What are your specialist areas of expertise?
All things Business, PR and promotion. Social Media, Influencer Marketing, Public Relations and Events Management.
What are your research interests; past and present?
I am currently beginning my research journey and exploring how social media has changed journalism, news delivery and media consumption. I find it fascinating how everyday people are becoming the real journalists, delivering news worthy content through personal platforms.
What’s your favourite thing about working for BCU?
I can be myself. Creating relationships with the students. Making fashion education fun. It’s important to enjoy what we do and learn in an engaging way.
Top tips for students on the Fashion Business and Promotion.
You must be self-directed and motivated. Watch the news, absorb everything… from what (unfortunately) The Kardashians are doing, through to Brexit, Trump and the General Elections. We must care… everything filters back down to the fashion industry.
What do you believe it takes to work in the fashion and textiles industry?
Be Hungry, be driven, work hard. Don’t be a wall flower. You don’t have to be the biggest loudest character in the room, but you must have an opinion. You must have something to say. Don’t be the colleague in the board meeting that fades into the background.
Any interesting industry anecdotes? 
Harry Styles once asked to buy me a drink… I turned him down. But I had a picture instead. Fan girl moment

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Find out more about BA (Hons) Fashion Business and Promotion.

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