As a current student at a HBCU ( Historical Black College or University) I can truly say that it is an experience like no other. There are many positive and negative perks about attending an HBCU, including being over looked for opportunities and talents you can only imagine. after browsing the web to find some trendy styles and celebrities to blog about I came across a post that needs to be a trending topic, Harlem’s Fashion Row (HFR).Harlem’s Fashion Row (HFR) teamed up with McCafe to offer HBCU fashion students a chance of a lifetime.This spring they partnered with McCafe to launch a Student Design Competition. The winner will collaborate with HFR and Project Runway alumni Kimberly Goldson to create the red carpet look for the McDonald’s 11th annual 365Black Awards host Janell Snowden.
HFR made a HBCU fashion student dreams come true, TraVonne Walker from Bowie State University to be exact. Brandice Henderson, Founder and CEO of the HFR expresses about the struggle of being a black college student studying fashion at a HBCU and I couldn’t agree more. Although I am a Public Relations major, I plan to pursue my career in the fashion industry and work closely with my fashion department to be a step closer. At Clark Atlanta University, the fashion department presents a fashion show that is impeccable every year, but does not receive to applause they deserve.There aren’t as many opportunities as otherr departments are offered, and makes many fashion majors frustrated.
After TraVonne Walker won the Harlem’s Fashion Row competition, the staff spoke with her to congratulate and ask a few questions about her experience in the competition.
HFR: Congratulations, TraVonne. We are so excited about giving back to HBCU schools and can’t wait for our Fall program. What does winning this competition mean for you?
TW: Winning this competition means a lot to me. It is a chance for me to step out of my box, take a chance and gain confidence in myself. This competition will also allow me the wonderful opportunity to travel, which will only expand my knowledge and inspiration for fashion. And lastly, I get to show my daughter that success is only measured by the steps you take to get there and achievement is possible for anyone who tries.
HFR: Why do you think it’s important to have these types of competitions for HBCU students?
TW: I truly appreciate Harlem’s Fashion Row and McCafe for this opportunity. It is important to have these types of competitions available for HBCU students because it gives us a chance to be seen. There aren’t many HBCU students exposed to different opportunities, which can greatly limit how far we see ourselves going in the future. With these opportunities, we are allowed chances and that’s truly all we need.
HFR: What do you hope to gain by winning this competition?
TW: By winning this competition I hope to gain more insight on how the fashion world works. I also want to acquire the skills of working under someone in the industry so I am well prepared for internships and jobs to build up to my career.