The High School of Fashion Industries is not like any other school in this city or even this country. It has a long history and tradition which I would like to share with you. The original school began in March, 1926, in two rooms of a loft building on 31st Street. Seventy-five students were taught Men's Clothing Design or Dressmaking, English Citizenship and Arithmetic by two teachers and one principal. Most of its students were immigrants or children of immigrants who were trying to make new lives for themselves in a new country.
The school moved to West 24th Street in 1940, where it opened as Central Needle Trades High School, this name accenting its stress on sewing, machine work and fashion design. The building itself is a fine example of Art Deco architecture and style. The murals in our auditorium are priceless art works of the depression era which have landmark status. Our school changes as the fashion industry of New York City changes. It adopted its present name in 1956, to reflect the new variety of the vocational majors offered.
Today, you may major in Fashion Design, Fashion Merchandising, Visual Merchandising, or Illustration and Graphics. In addition, our academic program will prepare you for the rigors of post-secondary education. Since its beginning, Fashion has had many ties with the corporate and labor leaders of the fashion industries. Our school advisory board helps us keep our curriculum up-to-date and raises scholarship monies for students. The Underfashion Club, the Black Retail Action Group, the National Association of Men's Sportswear Buyers, other companies and labor unions and the business partners of our Adopt-a-Student program provide additional support.
Thus, as you enter the High School of Fashion Industries, you are becoming part of a tradition of excellence, a part of the entire community of the fashion industries. You are here to design your future and become the designers, merchandisers, artists, and illustrators of the future. We wish you well during your stay with us, during these crucial years of your life. Come to us with an open heart and mind and you will find that you will learn lessons that will remain with you for the rest of your life.
Below is our student handbook to help guide you through your time here at the High School of Fashion Industries.
Daryl Blank, Principal