Malcolm Carfrae, Annabel Tollman, Nary Manivong, Alexandria Hilfiger, Amy Levin and Jeni Rose Discuss Your Future in Fashion

On Thursday, July 28, the YMA FSF hosted its annual Intern Social at NYU’s Gallatin School.  The 2011 scholars interning in NYC were invited to mingle with the organization’s board members and conclude a successful summer.  This year, the social was followed by a panel discussion moderated by fashion writer Lisa Marsh which featured six diverse fashion dignitaries including the executive vice president of global communications for Calvin Klein, Inc., Malcolm Carfrae;  founders and creative directors of NAHM, Nary Manivong and Alexandria Hilfiger; fashion stylist and journalist Annabel Tollman; founder of College Fashionista, Amy Levin; and the vice president of IMG Models, Jeni Rose. The theme of the discussion, “The Future of Fashion: What Does it Look Like and What is My Role?” was chosen to provide insight to scholars based on panelists’ unique and extensive experiences in the industry, and their thoughts on how fashion is evolving.

The night began even before the scholars and board members arrived as interviews with the panel members were filmed.  Each panelist shared heartfelt advice and perspective on what has helped him or her achieve success over the years and establish an inspiring career. The variety of advice was impressive—not a single answer was the same—but each piece was equally valuable.

As the interviews wrapped up and guests began to arrive, attendees were greeted by a delicious array of food and drinks supplied by local Grey Dog Café. Scholars were encouraged to chat with panelists and board members as well as catch up with their fellow scholars about their summer experiences.

As the party in the gallery came to a close, guests were ushered into Gallatin’s theater for a more formal discussion with the six panelists and moderator, which was followed by a question and answer session with the audience.

Highlights of the panel included: Nary Manivong’s amazing tale of rising above homelessness and working to become a successful designer, Amy Levin’s tireless entrepreneurial spirit, Malcolm Carfrae’s leap of faith to leave Australia for a job at Calvin Klein, Jeni Rose’s rise to model mogul from interning at Macy’s for free and casting catalogues, Alexandria’s work ethic demonstrated by her first job at 11 years old, and Annabel’s witty tales of befriending and dressing celebrities and the beauty of working in the world of fashion that many take for granted. In the myriad of backgrounds, experiences, and opinions, the underlying message was clear: always be humble, grateful, prepared and willing to take on any challenge. The hard work will pay off.

Stay tuned for photos next week!


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