rad3Upbeat music and a colourful range of fresh tea enticed students to the RAD Experience in the Innovative Design Showcase (IDS). The event gave students an exclusive look at the opportunities the New Academic Street Retail Activation District (RAD) will create.

RMIT alumni were given the chance to showcase their products in the IDS, while staff and students were treated to a VIP retail experience with a delicious high tea spread. Thanks to RMIT Activator, champagne and POPS alcoholic icy poles offered students a cheeky class-break snack.

The NAS Retail Activation District (RAD will feature four pop-up shops (PODs) that will allow students and alumni to run their own business; art , product launches, retail, and food and beverage stalls.

Master of International Development graduate, Koky Saly, displayed his BeeKeeper Parade backpacks in the IDS foyer. When RMIT Launchpad heard about Koky using profits to build schools in Cambodia, they proposed a partnership and BeeKeeper backpacks bearing the RMIT logo can now be found inside the brand-new RMIT Campus Store. With every purchase, RMIT students give a child in Cambodia the opportunity to learn English for one year.

“I think having retail space in RMIT is very important,” Koky said. “It’s an opportunity to utilise business to inspire students and to understand that if you can’t get a job, you always have the ability to create your own. One of the ways to teach this is by having a space like [the IDS/RAD], where it links graduates and alumni to make a profit and support themselves, through social enterprise, through business – and hopefully by using business in a way that’s not hurting the planet.”


RMIT Bachelor of Fashion Design graduate Yahav Ron’s fashion label, Paris99, featured a combination of his own creations and top-end international collections.

“RMIT is a business focused, design/fashion school – I think it’s good to have a place where we can show what students have achieved.” He explained.

Bachelor of Fashion Design student, Louisa Christie, usually attends her classes at RMIT’s Brunswick Campus but was checking out the new NAS space for the first time.

“I like the environment; I think it’s conducive to being very social,” she said. “I think [having retail space] is good for universities because it’s encouraging intelligent young people who are trying to run start-up initiatives to be involved in events like this.”

Keep an eye on the IDS to see what will pop up in the Retail Activation District next!

words: Nikki Russian