Course Leader for BA (Hons) Fashion Promotion, Sheelagh Wright has an extensive history with UCA from being a student of Medway College of Art & Design, which became Kent Institute Art & Design (KIAD) and which then merged with SIAD to form UCA in 2005. Graduating from Medway Sheelagh worked in the fashion industry as a designer pattern cutter working for a number of companies and labels and gained her fondest memories by assisting designer Victor Edelstein for DIOR, Salvador and BIBA.
Sheelagh continued to work as a freelance designer pattern cutter whist moving gradually into a teaching career. In 1989 she took on a full time teaching career and was appointed the course leader for numerous fashion undergraduate courses at UCA such as: Fashion Technology, Fashion Product Development, European Fashion Design, Fashion Design and became the course leader for BA (Hons) Fashion Promotion in 2009. Sheelagh completed her Masters in Higher and Professional Education at the University of London in 2002. During her time at UCA she has received two Leadership and Management awards in 2010 and 2013 and she represents academic staff on the Academic Board and Quality Enhancement Committee QEC. She has been an external examiner at UAL London College of Fashion and De Montford University and has been an external validation member for several courses such as UAL Central Saint Martins MA Fashion Communication.
Sheelagh’s research interests have focused around teaching and learning and she has presented papers nationally and internationally but her main interest has been working with charities. Since 2007 Sheelagh has worked with a UK based charity – HOPEHIV, in partnership with one of her first students, fashion entrepreneur Karen Millen. As project director for the Gateway School of Fashion she set up a fashion school in South Africa, involving fundraising, establishing networks for funding, curriculum development, recruitment and training of staff, project management and evaluation. This project was professionally recognised by being awarded The Times Higher Award in Excellence & Innovation in the Arts in 2009.