As a textiles and apparel senior, Jihyo Kim was exposed to unethical aspects of the fashion industry. During her summer in South Korea, she created her own clothing brand, named “Ledoubles,” to circumvent these amoral societal and environmental impacts.
Now, Kim is translating this mindset to Creators for Cause, a new student organization connecting students from all majors across campus to create sustainably sourced and ethically produced innovations for real world issues. Kim said the organization will brainstorm, produce and market one product every semester to benefit society.
“There are charity organizations who try to solve a problem by directly helping those in need, which is really a good thing to do, but we’re looking at a problem in a different way,” said Kim, president of Creators for Cause. “We’re trying to come up with a product or idea that can solve the problem in a more creative way.”
Vice President Ji Min Bae was involved in the creation of Kim’s fashion brand and said she decided to help her establish Creators for Cause after realizing the necessity and potential of collaboration.
“Every individual, even if they may be in the same major, has different perspectives seeing an issue or a problem or an object,” said Bae, an international relations and global studies senior. “If we come together, there (are) going to be so many varieties of ideas and problems to solve.”
Kim said environmental and ethical issues exist in every industry and can only be alleviated by students working across disciplines. Currently comprised of just three members, Kim said they are in the process of recruiting more.
Secretary Jiae An, biochemistry and allied health professions senior, decided to join Kim after the environmental values of Kim’s clothing brand resonated with her and she realized the potential impact Creators for Cause could have on promoting sustainability. An, who is from South Korea, said she was surprised by the drastic differences in environmental awareness between the United States and South Korea.
An said she is worried the inaction to reduce environmental impacts of large countries like the U.S. minimizes efforts of smaller countries like South Korea. By joining the organization, An said she hopes to make citizens more conscious of environmental issues.
“I want to take one step to think about the environment and take charge,” An said. “Maybe that will help society realize the importance of the environment.”