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News | Aug. 19, 2022

AFFOA and Greater Lawrence Technical School Conclude Product Development Challenge to Support Ukraine


CAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS, August 3, 2022 – Advanced Functional Fabrics of America (AFFOA) is proud to announce the conclusion of the 2022 Advanced Functional Fabric (AFF) Product Development Challenge with the Greater Lawrence Technical School (GLTS). Recent material and manufacturing breakthroughs have enabled the design and production of advanced functional fabrics that see, hear, sense, communicate, and monitor health. However, manufacturing fabrics with advanced capabilities requires a workforce with new skill sets.

Launched in 2018, the AFF program aims to develop the next generation of multi-skilled workers by exposing students to a myriad of technical skills and equipment in the context of manufacturing advanced functional fabrics. High school students from GLTS have completed the four-part hands-on AFF program during which they ideate and prototype novel textile products that address specific challenges.  At the conclusion of the program, students get to present their prototypes to their community and peers.

“This year’s AFF program was unique because the students were challenged with real-world problem – to come up with smart fabric solutions that could provide support to citizens and aid workers impacted by the ongoing crisis in Ukraine,” said AFFOA CEO, Sasha Stolyarov. “It was inspiring to see how each student connected with the problem statement in their own personal way, and developed concept solutions that drew upon their interest in electronics and fabrics motivated by a humanitarian assistance need,” he added.

Ceremoniously concluding the 2022 program, 40 sophomores and juniors took center stage and delivered final presentations describing their prototypes to hundreds of students, teachers, and community members at a recent event.

“It’s great to see students inspired and excited to design and produce innovative high-tech products of the future,”” said John Lavoie, Superintendent, Greater Lawrence Technical School. “AFF offers students far more than an opportunity to pursue a career, it allows them to be early adopters and leaders in a critical workforce that will impact the quality of people’s lives,” he added.

In its fourth year, the Advanced Functional Fabric program continues to grow and provide exciting opportunities to students, educators and institutions.

If you are interested in learning more about the Advanced Functional Fabric Curriculum or Product Development Challenge please reach out to