There’s nothing like hands-on experience and getting to do so in New York City was a one-of-a-kind opportunity for South Carolina volleyball sophomore Oby Anadi, who took part in the New York Fashion Week earlier this month.
“I really wanted to get out of my comfort zone and get into a different space where I could test my personality,” said Anadi, who is studying public relations with a minor on women and gender studies. “I wanted to see if I could still be myself under pressure. New York City is just like the movies and just like the TV shows! The city wasn’t overpowering for me, but the lights! You don’t know what time it is! That’s the craziest part.
“I met a lot of cool people while I was there. I got to meet come Champion executives, and I met some modeling scouts, agents, businesspeople, and some of their marketing departments. It was cool to see all the behind-the-scenes things and how it works in that industry. I think it would give me a better idea of what I’d be walking into if I decided to go into that industry.”
CLC, the nation’s leading collegiate licensing company, and IMG, the operator of New York Fashion Week: The Shows, partnered for the tenth installment of the event to provide a one-of-a-kind education experience for 30 students from 18 universities around the country. This unique academic enrichment program gives future fashion leaders a behind-the-scenes look at the industry. The students attended a runway show with top Korean designer Son Jung Wan, as well as an exclusive look at the new line by Tiffany Brown Design. They also enjoyed special access to the Ella Emhoff Likes to Knit! Pop-Up Showroom and participated in a Q&A with representatives from IMG, as well as a backstage tour of the production and execution of a fashion show at Spring Studios, which was the central hub of New York Fashion Week: The Shows.
“The biggest takeaway for me was that my little bubble can be bigger than I think it can. ”
“My favorite part of the trip was after the fashion show,” Anadi said. “I was standing in a common area and talking with some influencers that I had been following for a couple of years. I spoke to a lot of people I had never seen before.
“I really like talking to people, and I was interviewed by the New York Fashion Week influencers that they had there. I would love to do that! Whenever I see people interviewing celebrities on the red carpet, I think that I’d like to do that.
“I watched one of the influencers and everyone following them around with the posing and the long shots they were getting to promote product, and then she didn’t even drink the drink at all. That was the funniest part.”
The students also spent at day at top athletic fashion brand and collegiate licensee Champion where they had the chance to learn firsthand how a clothing line is developed and merchandised. Anadi was thankful for the experience and applying what she learned from it as she continues to fine tune her future.
“Long term I would like to go into politics, but short term I would like to do something in entertainment; maybe modeling or working with a brand,” Anadi said. “In studying P.R., I’d like to work with a brand and see how to connect with the community better.
“The biggest takeaway for me was that my little bubble can be bigger than I think it can. With the little town I’ve lived in near New Orleans, and then coming to South Carolina, and then going to New York, I realized that there is nothing stopping me from going anywhere. One of the coolest things, was that I got ‘Paparazzied.’ They told us people would ask for pictures. A bunch of photographers took some pictures of me, so that was my movie star moment!”