The Underswell School of Understanding

Sustainability in the Apparel Industry (Full Course)


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Ready for a deeper, more industry-specific dive?

This is step-by-step guide to learning what you need to know about sustainability, the triple bottom line, and how it applies to the fashion and apparel industry.

Are you building a sustainability department at a fashion brand? Chasing the sustainability job in a fashion company, or building your own sustainable fashion brand? If so, this is the information you’ll need to understand where we’ve been, where we are, and where the industry is going. PS The conversation is only getting more complex while the expectations on us and brands is moving higher and higher.

I know it’s important, but is it for me?

(I know you're thinking this)


Let’s face it, Sustainability is the main topic on everyone’s mind; especially in the fashion industry. But, what does it even mean? Can it be achieved? Where do we start? What do you need to know? Can you become an expert? The answer to that last question, is a definitive, yes! 

This course lays out the path for you to do so. And, IMO, everyone - at every role, from the retail floor to the executive floor - needs to be well-versed in this language.

What's more, this course:

 💯 Picks up where part 1, The Essentials leaves off, diving deeper into the specifics of sustainability in the apparel industry.

 💯 Fills the gap between the “science stuff,” the “social stuff,” and the “business stuff” - all specifically in the apparel industry - and from here on out, referred to as The Triple Bottom Line (People, Planet, Profit).

 💯 Is also based on my 24 years of general apparel industry experience (so I know if/where/how these concepts can be integrated into your business).

 💯 Sticks to a proven learning system.

 💯 Is based off of a 3-semester certificate program I developed for Orange Coast College.

When you purchase Sustainability in the Apparel Industry; The Full Course, you will receive 

  • Full access to part 1 and part 2 of The School of Understanding | Sustainability in the Apparel Industry online course where I cover all the essentials (the foundation of what you need to know in order to move forward).
  • Developed by Derek Sabori, this course – modeled after Derek’s 48-week/3-semester college certificate program at Orange Coast College, Fashion Dept. – contains 24 lectures (each approximately +/- 50 minutes in length) broken up into multiple modules for easy navigation.

This course is taught by Derek Sabori - Former VP of Sustainability, College-Level Sustainability Instructor, & Brand Consultant


Why Haven't I Learned This Already?

Great question! It was the very question I asked myself (and still do) when I started my journey.

I don’t know why sustainability, responsibility, ethics, and good humanism aren’t taught as core elements of fashion and business programs; they should be.

A Unique Course:

My teaching approach blends science, responsibility, ethics, business, and good sense into one, all while focusing on the three factors we need to consider when talking about sustainability: 

The environment, us people, our economy.

That’s the Triple Bottom Line. You’ll learn the words, the phrases, the concepts, the best books, the most respected, resources, the biggest challenges, the best approaches, and more.

After taking this online course, you’ll be able to:

  •  Understand the journey that the industry has been on as it regards to sustainability (so much is happening, but it’s been years in the making)


  •  Understand the sustainability language that’s used in professional, academic, and social articles


  •  Help contribute to your company’s sustainability program (or help build one)


  •  Better critique the sustainability claims of brands that are marketing to you


  •  Make more conscious purchasing decisions (personally & professionally)


  •  Confidently enter the modern, conscious economy and/or classroom

Schedule a Free Call to Get Started

Let’s spend 25 minutes getting to know each other and talking about where you or your team is at today in regards to sustainability and where you’d like to be in the future.

Schedule a Free Call to Get Started

Course Curriculum

This is the sustainable fashion program that I always wished existed. I built the curriculum from the ground up, with complete video trainings, an online community, and detailed resources so you get both the information and the support that you need.

Topics Include:

  •  All the lectures & material from The Essentials course, plus:
  •  History of Sustainable Fashion (2-part series)
  •  Review and explanations of important industry reports:
    •  Global Fashion Agenda (Pulse Reports + CEO Agendas)
    •  Fashion Revolution Transparency Index
    •  Greenpeace Fashion at a Crossroads
    •  Ellen MacArthur Foundation – New Textiles Economy
    •  Stand.Earth’s Filthy Fashion Report
    •  KPMG & Textile Exchange – Fashion & the SDGs
  •  Course wrap up – final advice

    The course also includes 10-question quizzes throughout to assess learning, a midterm and 2 finals (each at different stages) so we can gauge understanding.

    Additionally, the following is offered for all enrollees in The Essentials Course: 3 x 30 minute coaching sessions with me, Derek Sabori to talk about your sustainability journey, and how best to integrate sustainability into your career or brand. 

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What are students saying?


“I am absolutely loving the course. There is so much to learn (and never forget) and the content is on point. Also watching some of the documentaries suggested; mind blowing…  
Silvana C., Marketing Professional


Not sure what my job title will be, but I know that sustainability is now on the forefront of my mind in everything I do in life, professionally and personally. I know the knowledge that I learned from you, and the passion that I gained from you will lead the way to my success in any venture I find myself on.” – Tori A, aspiring professional


“I’d been learning about sustainable fashion for years on my own, but I wasn’t learning enough. So I decided to take this course with Derek. I can definitely apply what I learned in this course at a clothing brand. I feel so much more prepared to take my next step in my sustainability career.”  - Sarah F., Product Development professional

About Derek.

An apparel industry veteran with more than 24 years in the action sports/lifestyle industry and two degrees (BA, MBA) from UC Irvine, Derek balances multiple roles, all revolving around sustainability & mindfulness, and the apparel industry. He’s a co-founder at Kozm, a consultant to lifestyle brands, a former college instructor, and an entrepreneur, helping brands, individuals, and students start, strengthen, and scale meaningful sustainability programs through foundational education, solid understanding, compelling storytelling, and best-in-class solutions.


Sustainability in the Apparel Industry


The Full Course

  • Includes 3 x 30 Minute Coaching Sessions