ISU Apparel, Merchandising & Design Class Redesigns IPI Denim Jackets

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For the fourth year, IPI-Iowa Prison Industries and Iowa State University's Apparel, Merchandising & Design (AMD) program have collaborated on a class project to design garments to be produced in IPI's textiles shops. These projects have given the ISU students the opportunity to work on real-life designs in a production environment. IPI benefits from the students' insight into production and design improvements.

This year under Senior Lecturer Brenda Ackerman's leadership, 21 students in AMD 431 Apparel Engineering worked in teams to redesign the denim jackets worn by Iowa inmates and produced in IPI's textiles shops. The students were tasked with improving the fit and comfort of the jackets as well as recommending more efficient production methods. The students presented their designs and production methods to IPI staff and incarcerated individuals at the Fort Dodge Correctional Facility on April 26, 2016. While all the teams did an excellent job, the winning team (pictured) provided ideas into recycling opportunities and best addressed concerns of fit and comfort of the jackets. They also did an excellent job preparing for the presentation and answered questions posed to them relating to production, material and design.

IPI will now begin the process of further reviewing the team's design and production ideas for feasibility. All recommended changes will be reviewed by IPI staff and Fort Dodge textiles crew members to ensure they meet cost, usage, and safety requirements. As the ideas are investigated, tested and deemed acceptable, implementation can occur quickly as the jackets are continuously produced in the Fort Dodge textiles shop in small daily quantities.

IPI thanks the entire AMD 431 class for their hard work and excellent ideas; we look forward to implementing their ideas and producing more comfortable jackets for Iowa's inmates while increasing production efficiency.

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