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Fashion Students Prepare to Roll up Their Sleeves this Summer

Spring Fashion Show Ashon Sylvester
Ashon Sylvester's Work

With the sizzling success of Academy of Art University's Graduation Fashion Show fresh in their minds, many School of Fashion students are preparing to start their professional futures this Summer. Internships, scholarships, jobs and unique study abroad opportunities loom large for these talented students and graduates.

Among the top honors that students received this year was a Fulbright Scholarship for Bethany Meuleners. Bethany graduated with an MFA in Fashion and Knitwear Design. She will spend 10 months in Nepal, learning traditional techniques for knitting and felting from local artisans.

Academy of Art University is the only fashion school currently invited to participate in New York Fashion Week. Bethany debuted her collection of intricately layered women's wear there in February, but she hasn't been content to rest on her laurels. Most recently, she and fellow Academy of Art University graduate Sabah Mansoor Husain debuted a collaborative collection at "avant garde supperchic," an event at supperclub in San Francisco.

Student awards were also announced at the Graduation Fashion Show. All along the dazzlingly white runway, cameras flashed, models strutted, and guests looked on in awe.

Spring Fashion Show Rinat Brodach
Rinat Brodach's Work

The celebrity guest list for the event sparkled with Julie Chaiken of Chaiken Clothing, Elisa Palomino of Diane von Fürstenberg, Ian Hannula and Joe Haller of Nice Collective, Dirk Ban Saene and Keanan Duffty among others.

Academy of Art University President Dr. Elisa Stephens awarded guest of honor, Suzy Menkes, an honorary doctorate. Menkes, a fashion reporter and editor for the International Herald Tribune, presented four of the scholarship awards. Impressed by the creativity of the student designers, she told the San Francisco Chronicle, "It was a very strong show, very diversified. The knitwear designers are ace, exceptional, first class."

For four students, the pièce de résistance of the show was the announcement they had won the San Francisco–Paris Sister City Scholarship Exchange. Ronnie Omar Nery, Ashon Sylvester, Alice Spies and Rinat Brodach will spend the 2010-2011 academic year in Paris studying at Studio Berçot and Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne.

Graduates Brenna Riley and Ruby Guerra are looking forward to their new positions with popular clothing retailer Abercrombie & Fitch. The Ohio-based clothing company has a long-standing relationship with the Academy. Since 2007, they have recruited new talent through a special portfolio project. Two juniors, Peter Nyugen and Jennifer Chen, also join Abercrombie & Fitch this summer as interns.

Some internships take students farther afield. Delphina Star Rodriguez and Camille Bucu will head to Bangladesh for internships at YELLOW, the in-house fashion label and retail division of Beximco Textile.

Fashion students also received internships with quirky designer and retailer Walter Van Beirendonck, New York City men's wear designer Patrik Ervell, and iconic fashion designer Diane von Fürstenberg among many others.

Hats off to all of the Fashion students who received honors this year! A complete list of scholarship, internship and job recipients can be found on the School of Fashion's blog.

If you missed the show, you can view it here.

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