Kent State regularly lists among the top five fashion schools in the U.S. yet it is not situated in a fashion hub, nor even a throbbing metropolis. It is located in the midst of the pastoral landscape of Northeast Ohio. While the students can currently enjoy the campus’s magnificent display of Fall colors they have to drive some distance to reach the nearest fabric store. Nevertheless, its alumni land roles in the top NYC fashion companies.
A significant way that Kent State students maintain their global perspective while immersing themselves in the serene splendor of the midwestern campus is to take advantage of the school’s prestigious study abroad opportunities: the school has outposts in New York, Florence, Hong Kong, London, and Paris. This month marks the tenth anniversary of the New York Studio. To celebrate the occasion and toast to its further successes, its director, Young Kim, organized an evening gathering for “industry tastemakers and friends of the school.”
Kent State's NYC Studio celebrates 10 year anniversary
The Director of the Fashion School, J.R. Campbell, flew in from the main campus to deliver the opening address. Among the audience were alumni who still carry fond feelings for their alma mater, many of whom spent either a Spring or Fall semester of their junior year in the NYC Studio. The companies they represented are among the city’s most notable: Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Philip Lim, Helmut Lang...Inevitably the opportunity to study in the NYC Studio paved the way for their transition into a successful career in the city upon graduation.
This week’s event was a double celebration as it launched the new scholarship created by Young to raise funds for further educational programming and to help students who wish to attend the New York Studio, by contributing to their out of pocket expenses. A silent auction was held during which guests were invited to bid on luxury and lifestyle items ranging from a Moncler coat to Soul Cycle sessions.
The following day, Young summed up the evening: “I am beyond grateful and touched by those who joined us last night to celebrate and to support NYC Studio Director’s Scholarship Fund, for the generous sponsorships and donations, to our tireless volunteers. It was definitely a successful event, our fundraising goal was surpassed. We will now be able to provide a total of three Program Fee scholarships for the next academic year.”
Here’s to her passion and vision and to the studio’s continued success!
By contributing guest editor Jackie Mallon, who is on the teaching faculty of several NYC fashion programmes and is the author of Silk for the Feed Dogs, a novel set in the international fashion industry.