Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

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October 4, 2022

Textiles and apparel majors travel to New York City through Fashion Scholarship Fund

Manoo Sirivelu
From left, Taryn Lam, Elleanor Ross, Amaryllis Dunklee and Jennifer Martin pose for a portrait at the Mary E. Gearing Hall. They will travel to New York City this week to be honored for their accomplishments at the 2024 Fashion Scholarship Fund Awards Gala.

Last April, Amaryllis Dunklee stood amongst fashion legends such as Anna Wintour and Tommy Hilfiger at a gala in New York City. Luxuriously dressed in a gown from the Neiman Marcus Group, Dunklee was one of 127 college fashion scholars selected for this honor.

“It’s the leading scholarship achievement you can get if you’re a fashion student in America,” Dunklee said.

This weekend Dunklee will return to New York, alongside fellow textiles and apparel seniors Taryn Lam, Elleanor Ross and Jennifer Martin for the 2024 Fashion Scholarship Fund Awards Gala.

A national non-profit, the Fashion Scholarship Fund aims to support fashion-oriented education and development, annually awarding students for their work across all disciplines — including design product development, merchandising, marketing analytics and business strategy.

“It’s really cool to feel recognized by a lot of people and to be in a huge community of very like-minded and talented individuals,” Lam said.

To qualify for the scholarship, the students developed case studies that tackle current issues in the fashion industry. In pursuit of causes such as sustainability and accessibility, the four students explored ways to make a difference in current companies. For her study, Lam used bio-materials she developed as a student researcher to create a sustainable collection for Heaven by Marc Jacobs. 

“I was really into this year’s prompt because it was based off of ESG (environmental, social and governance),” Lam said. “I really want to focus on promoting and working with sustainable and responsible fashion.”

Lam said she appreciated the opportunity to develop skills applicable in the field. 

“It is useful to create a case study like this because it allows you to dive deep from concept ideation to design and then final product,” Lam said.

Also inspired to promote sustainable fashion, Dunklee devised a business strategy for the upcoming Prada and NASA collaboration, proposing the use of leathers made from food waste in their designs. Dunklee combined her love for science and fashion in the study. 

“I created a sustainability collection for them with an ESG strategy to promote women into STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) careers,” Dunklee said. 

Ross designed an adaptive clothing line for Free People Movement, aiming to bridge the gap between functionality and style in clothing for people with disabilities. Unfamiliar to athleisure or adaptive clothing, Ross said she chose the topic to challenge herself.

“It’s a lot of research, but the payoff is worth it,” Ross said. “It was inspiring looking into a category that I didn’t have any prior knowledge on.”

Ross was additionally awarded the Virgil Abloh “Post-Modern” Scholarship Fund, a named scholarship also through FSF. Abloh created the fund to support upcoming Black fashion leaders.

“There’s not a lot of Black creatives in the industry that are well known, so it’s inspiring that he made this scholarship for us,” Ross said.

This weekend the students will travel to New York to be honored for their accomplishments. Martin, awarded for her sustainable collection for Levi’s jeans, “ReLIVING Re-LeVI’NG,” built on Levi’s’ current sustainability initiative of re-selling second hand jeans and utilizes the unsold second-hand denim to create her designs. She said she is excited to connect with other students in the field, as well as grow closer to her textiles and apparel community.

“I’m excited to go with three other classmates from UT,” Martin said. “(I’m) very grateful to have that support system.”

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