The Launch of the design START Mentoring Program

Since its establishment in 2018, the Design Division of the Hungarian Fashion & Design Agency (HFDA) has been continuously working to develop a stable, efficient and long-term mentoring programme that provides professional support to talented Hungarian designers. Horizontal discussions, professional dialogue, and the collection of national and international best practices have been developed by the division into a multi-tiered programme: the design START mentor programme.

The programme is based on three pillars: Lecture series, internships/field research at domestic factories and international industry tours.

The aim of the lecture series is to pass on essential knowledge needed for designers to excell in business development. The designers will receive valuable information in a personalised form, and will be able to process and apply this knowldege in practice with the help of acclaimed and recognised mentors.

The second pillar, is focused on internships and field research throughout July and August. The HFDA will assist in connecting the mentorees with brands and manufacturers, where they will also have a hands-on opportunity to try out their newly-acquired knowledge, and will sebsequently also be able to see behind the scenes of how products are manufactured.

The third pillar consists of international industry tours, where working trips abroad will give the mentorees the opportunity to gain valuable experience and knowledge through visiting prestigous exhibitions and factories of the top design players in the field.

An important next stop of design START is the S/ALON Budapest 2019 exhibition in September, where thanks to the lecture series, practical training and field research, the mentorees will be able to present their products with confidence and an eye for business.

Programme Mentors:

Rita Mária Halasi (Design Specialist, Consultant, Curator)
Dr. Attila Róbert Cosovan (Ferenczy Noémi Awardee, Designer, Professor at Corvinus University of Budapest, Co-founder of coandco.cc)
Elenonóra Balogh (Ferenczy Noémi Awardee - Glass Design, Designer, Restorator, Historic Heritage Conservation Specialist)
Gábor Wilheim (Kanizsa Trend Kft. - Executive Director, Hungarian Furniture Association - President)
Gigi Timár (Knowledge Management Leader, BGE Budapest Lab)
Barnabás Szabó (Economist, Investment Consultant)
Petra Hoffmann (Design Theorist, Founder of Stilblog and Stilshop)