I am starting 2018 with a reflection back on 2017 and to share with you some of my personal amazing highs, but also unbelievable lows! It has been the most difficult year of my life so far.
2017 nearly left me broken and it's only through prayer and sheer determination that I've been able to get through it, and soldier on.
As some of you may know who have followed me for a while, in the latter part of 2016 I was caught up in the traumatic events in Southern Italy where over 300 people died in earthquakes that shook the central region between August 2016 and January 2017. I was living in that exact same area, and experienced the dramatic power of the first full-scale earthquake in August 2016 and again, more powerfully still in October first hand.
Our house, which was going to be my base for several months whilst working between the UK and Italy was destroyed, and whilst my family and I escaped unhurt, it was the most terrifying experience that you can imagine, that interrupted our both our personal lives and work. I had no choice but to rethink everything we had planned both professionally and personally. But basically, we escaped in our car with nothing but our cat and a few bits we could quickly pop in the boot!
I'll spare you further details of these two events and suggest you read a post on my daughter's blog where she describes in her own words how it unfolded and the impact it had on all of us.
Then, as if this wasn't enough to test my strength and resolve, on January 29th I developed a massive torn retina in my right eye. Despite an initially successful operation to correct it, some heavy bleeding in my eye followed, leaving me totally blind! This required further major surgery and eventually the removal of a cataract in September.
So for eight months, I lived with total blindness in my right eye. I have so much more empathy now with people who have limited vision or are blind!
Thank Goodness all is now well. In fact, my right eye now has better vision than my left thanks to the replaced lens, and the brilliant surgeon who saved my sight.
These experiences fundamentally disrupted all our plans for 2017 meaning that our launch and progress of The Fashion Student Hub was inevitable delayed. The delay meant holding back on course development, platform features, and tutor recruitment. And despite being some 9 months behind where we aimed to be by now, the feedback we have had for The Fashion Student Hub has been overwhelmingly positive, supportive and enthusiastic.
2017 was also the year where we launched We Teach Fashion which has also received similar levels of support and praise. Again our progress here has been slower than we'd planned for due to the same reasons.
Both these platforms have allowed me to meet some incredibly talented people. Tutors and students from all continents who see the potential for online courses as a tool to change the shape of fashion education for all.
So I feel truly blessed that we have such a rich diversity of fans that are willing us to succeed, supporting us with ideas and feedback for each of these platforms.
We have so many great fashion professionals who have signed up as course developers. They come from backgrounds all over the globe, in fashion marketing, garment construction, fashion photography, fashion illustration, management, pattern cutting, fashion design, university lecturers, visual merchandising, history of fashion, Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop experts, retail management, knitwear designers, shoe designers, WW designers, quality control and so on...
2018 is going to be a great year and we are looking for more fashion professionals like you to join us!
So as you enter into 2018 and you reflect upon the past year and look forward to the next, what are the answers to the following questions for you?
Make 2018 the year for creating your course, promoting it and earning extra income from the sales to hungry students keen to learn from your real-world experience.
If you haven't already done so take our short course on course planning to get started.
Or if you want to know what all the fuss is about and why online learning and selling your knowledge is exploding online watch my four free videos. Get them here. You'll be amazed at the opportunities.
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