Andre Julian West, an Assistant Professor at North Carolina State University, has been in the apparel business for over 30 years. After graduating from Huddersfield University he was employed by one of the first trend forecasting companies in England, Dereck Healey International. Dereck Healey was a design consultant group for Monsanto, ICI, Ford, and Marubeni Tex While employed at Deryck Healey, Andre developed his own clothing line which was presented at Central St. Martins University. Following this, Andre sold his collection in a number of London boutiques. In 1984 he moved to the USA and worked for Hampshire Designers Group as a product development manager. Andre was later recruited to work for a knitwear house called Sweaters USA based in Greensboro, North Carolina producing garments for JC Penny and Walmart. Andre went on to form his own domestic manufacturing company called Knit Design Group designing under the name, Andre St. Romaine; growing this business with a New York showroom and three retail stores. Seeing the trend toward manufacturing going offshore, he sold his business after a brief stint manufacturing in South America.
Andre started as a part-time instructor at the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale teaching product development. Within the year he was promoted to department head. Over the 12 years at the Art Institute Andre grew the department from 200 students to nearly 600 students while developing three new programs, a bachelor’s degree in Fashion Design, a bachelor’s degree in Fashion Merchandising, and a diploma in Retail Management.
While managing the department Andre completed his Masters of Visual Arts at Miami International School of Art and Design with an MFA. Following this, he completed an Ed D in Organizational Leadership at Argosy University graduating in 2012. Andre’s dissertation was on teaching in a virtual world.
In August 2013, Andre joined the faculty in the Wilson College of Textiles at North Carolina State University. He currently teaches computer-aided design CAD patternmaking, workshop practices, and the history of fashion online. His current research involves the use of technology within textiles and fashion product development inclusive of sublimation printing, 3-D virtual garment making, generative design, 3-D body scanning, and whole garment knitwear. He is currently working with a team of entomologists and comfort specialist on a number of grants involving the exclusion of vector insects without the use of pesticides and harmful chemicals from the Department of Defense, USDA, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. He is part of the team that is the 2017 winner of the Chancellor Innovation Fund.