A New Point Of View

My First Window Display At Charles Men's Shop.
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Charles Men’s shop is a family owned and operated business that has been Batavia’s number one choice for fine men’s clothing since the store’s creation in 1947. The store has an excellent reputation within the local community, as well as within Genesee Community College. For these reasons, I was explicitly overjoyed when offered the opportunity to intern as a visual merchandising coordinator at Charles Men’s Shop. I considered this a great opportunity to improve my skills within designing window displays, as I am set to take the visual display class in the next eight-week session at GCC.

Maggie's First Window Display at Charles Men's Shop.

Maggie’s First Window Display at Charles Men’s Shop.

Before going into set up my first window display I had very little experience doing any task of this kind. I was terrified of failing or of letting anyone down. I researched hours-upon-hours, looking at different color palettes popular for fall menswear, as well as observing a variety of window displays online. I took advice from anywhere I could get it; I was told to find a theme or direction in order to make the execution of my vision easier. I also spoke to Maggie, a current freshman in the Fashion Business Merchandising program at GCC, and current visual merchandising intern at Charles Men’s Shop. Maggie had told me that her first window theme would center around indoor fall theming which she phrased as, “Antiqued fall elegance.” Maggie captured her vision perfectly within her window space.

I however took an alternate route. I executed a theme inspired by the outdoor beauty of fall and the sense of community it can create through local sporting events and other active interests. I received a plethora of support and guidance from the Men’s shop staff, Kristen and Don, as well as from my fashion professors, Professor Dudkowski and Professor Ehrhart. I was appreciative of any constructive criticism or suggestions they had for me, as I felt lost in this brand new world. I’m still finding my way when it comes to creating displays for Charles Men’s Shop; recently I took on the task of creating a table display as well.

My First Table Display at Charles Men's Shop.

My First Table Display at Charles Men’s Shop.

Though I find this job to be challenging, I am interested and excited to strengthen valuable and necessary skill-sets within myself. If it were not for the excellent professors and connections I have access to at Genesee Community College I may never had earned an opportunity of this caliber. I am incredibly grateful to have this chance to grow, and cannot wait to see where this opportunity takes me in the not-so-far future.

Coming Soon: #GCCINNYC

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In less than a week I will be accompanying the fashion students of Genesee Community College, as well as anyone else interested in expanding the horizons of their knowledge of the fashion business, to one of the largest fashion capitals in the world, New York City. This annual trip to NYC has become a rite of passage for many of the fashion students at GCC, and for good reason. Professor Dudkowski and Professor Ehrhart, the resident Fashion Business program professors, are networking experts. Both of them have a never-ending list of contacts that spans continents, ensuring that each yearly trip to NYC is filled with unique and once-in-a-lifetime experiences in the fashion world. This trip is no exception. After spending a fun-filled day solo in the city on Wendesday October 8th, we will all rise early on Thursday morning in order to visit the John Varvatos showrooms. John Varvatos is an American contemporary menswear designer. He was the recipient of the CFDA: Menswear Designer of the Year award in both 2001 and 2005, he was also the winner of the Perry Ellis Award for menswear in 2000, and in 2007 he was named the designer of the year by GQ. This type of visit should not be experienced lightly, very few people get to step foot into this showroom, let alone tour it. We will then have the opportunity to visit Buffalo David Bitton Showrooms and receive a tour by PR Director, Diane Alexander.

Last spring students in the fashion program at GCC received a box of clothing from Buffalo David Bitton's Spring 2014 line.

Last spring students in the fashion program at GCC received a box of clothing from Buffalo David Bitton’s Spring 2014 line.

As many readers of the GCC blog may remember, the college has a special relationship with Buffalo David Bitton. Last year students studying in the GCC fashion program were sent items from the new Buffalo David Bitton spring 2014 line in order to be used in the 33rd Annual fashion show, Ethereal, at Genesee Community College. The Buffalo David Bitton company launched in Canada in 1985 as a womenswear and menswear label and now sells to prestigious stores such as Macy’s and Bloomingdales. Their product line has been endorsed by a variety of A-list celebrities including Christina Aguilera, Halle Berry, and Brad Pitt, just to name a few. After we experience the rare opportunity of browsing these showrooms, the Fashion Business Merchandising students will split from the Fashion Design students. The Fashion Design students will visit Mood designer fabrics, the number-one shopping destination for fashion fabric in the world; Mood is now a household name amongst anyone on the hunt for high quality fabrics due to the popular reality TV show, Project Runway. At this point the fashion business merchandising students will visit The Doneger Group, the fashion industry’s leading source of global trend intelligence, focused merchandising direction, expert analysis of the retail business, and comprehensive market information.

Anthony M. Urmey of LIM speaking to fashion students

Anthony M. Urmey of LIM speaking to fashion students

On the morning of Friday, October 10th, everyone on the trip will have the opportunity to visit LIM and meet with Mr. Anthony Urmey, Admissions and Transfer Services Counselor. Urmey visited GCC last spring in order to inform prospective students who were hoping to transfer to LIM about financial aid and scholarship programs. We will also have the chance to hear two GCC alumni speak at this event.

David Zyla speaking at GCC

David Zyla speaking at GCC

Later that evening Emmy Award-winning stylist, Best-Selling author, and recent GCC keynote speaker, David Zyla, will be hosting a Fashion Speak Friday event on the topic of men’s neckties. The head haberdashery designer of Ralph Lauren along with the 90’s necktie giant, Gene Meyer, will be at this event as well. This will be a great chance for all students to network with influential people working in fashion; design students will also have the opportunity to sketch models after the show.

Saturday, October 11th, will conclude the trip, and begin our journey home to GCC. We will all return with a superior understanding and appreciation of the fashion business that we can apply to our individual programs of study, and ultimately assist us in the production of the 34th annual fashion show at Genesee Community College.

Be on the lookout for updates from the resident bloggers of the trip, and view instant updates on Twitter and Instagram under the hashtag #GCCINNYC .

Emmy Winning Stylist Coming to GCC

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Ever wonder what color red looks best on you? David Zyla can help you know. Don’t miss a chance to hear the Emmy-winning stylist and author speak at Genesee Community College on Wednesday, September 17, 2014 at 1:00 p.m. in Room T102 of the Conable Technology Building on the GCC Batavia campus. His talk is part of The Fall Fashion Speakers Series at GCC. Zyla will be available for press interviews and photographs 30 minutes prior to his presentation in the Rosalie “Roz” Steiner Art Gallery in the Genesee Center for the Arts.

Zyla believes “every person has the right to feel empowered and look fantastic.” He helps people discover their individual palette of flattering colors found by looking at tones in the eyes, hair and skin. “By honoring and wearing these colors…we not only illuminate ourselves, but we build the confidence needed to attract love, enhance our power, restore our energy, make a lasting impression and show the world who we really are,” he writes on his website, www.davidzyla.com.

Zyla started out in fashion design, launching his own Seventh Avenue label at the age of 22. In 2001, ABC hired him to reinvigorate the visual quality of daytime television. He was head costume designer for General Hospital, Port Charles and All My Children for which he received an Emmy Award in 2010 for Outstanding Achievement in Costume Design. He has also designed for commercials and film as well as Broadway shows and regional theatre productions. He has worked with well-known personalities, including Susan Lucci, Carol Burnett, Tom Hanks and Hillary Clinton.

Zyla is the author of “The Color of Style” and “Color Your Style.” His new book “How to Win at Shopping” is due out in January.

For further information, contact Donna Rae Sutherland, associate director of Marketing Communications at (585) 343-0055 x 6616 or dsutherland@genesee.edu.

Ten Reasons Why I’m Excited for Fall 2014 at GCC

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I have to admit. I’m going through GCC withdrawal. I go to the store to pick up some pool supplies and I find myself battling through the back-to-school supplies to find the clearance pool floaties. Part of me gets mad because we haven’t even gotten through July yet, but another part of me becomes nostalgic and I suddenly can’t wait to get back in the swing of things. So I thought I would share a list with the top ten things that I am excited about for the Fall 2014 semester.

10. The GCC Child Care Center

This one is for my daughter. She talks about her classroom, teachers, and friends daily. It is such a relief to know that my daughter is well taken care of at the GCC Child Care Center and she loves every minute of it. Last fall I was beyond nervous about putting her in school but I really had no other choice. It was one of the best decisions I’ve made for my little lady.

The center has structured schedules, wonderful teachers, and spotless classrooms. Their services are available to children ages six weeks to preschool aged children. Children of students, staff, faculty, and the community are able to use the facility. Visit their website to learn more and to find the contact information for Staci Williams, Director of the Child Care Center, to see if they have openings.

9. Seeing Old Friends and Making New Friends

When I came back to GCC I decided that I would not be a wallflower and that I would force myself to socialize. I encourage everyone to do this. I have made some great friends at GCC and I cannot wait to see everyone. I am also excited to meet a whole new round of friends.

I think everyone should have that genuine college experience. You won’t keep the same circle of friends from high school forever. This is the time to get used to the unknown and learn to put yourself out there. You may not make friends right away but before you know it, you will find a great group of friends.

8. The Student Union

The Student Union is a great place to relax and hang out with friends between classes. My personal favorite thing about the union is the smoothies in the cafe. The cafe also offers subs, pizza and other great food. While you’re hanging out in the union with friends there is usually a few games of pool and ping-pong being played. I’ve never played but I do enjoy watching the seemingly endless games!

The Student Union is also home to the Student Activities Office. Student Activities plans a wide variety of fun events throughout the year like movie nights, dances, and pizza parties. They also run a Leadership Certificate Program to help students develop their leadership skills. This is a great program that is open to any student. To learn more about the Student Activities Office and the Leadership Program please visit the Student Activities website.

7. Clubs!

Fall 2014 Club Fair

There is a wide variety of clubs and organizations at GCC. There is something for everyone and joining one of the clubs is an awesome way to make great friends and memories. Each semester during WOW (Week Of Welcome) Week Student Activities holds a club fair where you can learn more about the clubs from their representatives in the Forum. You can find a list of all the clubs here. Some of the clubs are for certain majors and others are open to the public. All of these wonderful clubs are welcoming new members so feel free to contact the club advisors or meet them in person at the WOW Week Club Fair.

6. Stress

I guess it’s a personal preference. I feel kind of lost without the challenges and stress that comes along with my coursework and extracurricular activities. This is my last semester before I graduate and I cannot wait for the challenges that are ahead of me. I’ve found that as long I keep my work life planned then life is good. One way I do this is by going through all of my schedules and combine them on my Google Calendar. I usually sit down and put about a month’s worth of appointments, exams, and homework into this online calendar. I even set email reminders so I don’t forget about an upcoming event.

5. The T-207 Computer Lab

The T-207 Computer Lab

Whenever I need to buckle down and get a ton of work done I go here. There are usually a lot of computers available and if you’re working on a project that needs a pop of color then you can use their color printer. Don’t go crazy with the color printing. There is most definitely a page limit. This computer lab is on the second floor of the T Building on main campus and their schedule can be found here. Staff at this lab can also help you find or reset your GCC username and/or password as well as help you with your Blackboard account.

 

4. Campus Centers and Online Learning

GCC Campus Center Locations

GCC offers a wide variety of courses online, at the main campus and at six additional campuses across the area. I’m taking full advantage of these conveniences this semester by taking a few online classes, classes at the main campus, and one class at the Medina Campus. If you’re considering taking all or some classes at one of our campus centers please take a look at the Campus Center website.

Did you know that you can earn some degrees with GCC completely online? Yup. It’s true! There are over a dozen degrees that can be completed online, plus another thirty can be completed almost entirely online. Check out this list to see which program fits your schedule.

3. The Alfred C. O’Connell Library

The library at GCC is basically awesome. There are four banks of computer stations, a technology classroom in the back of the library, quiet study rooms for groups, and an endless amount of resources. The librarians are friendly and are more than willing to help you find the proper resources you need to complete your coursework. The library will allow you to check out laptops and textbooks but you cannot take them out of the library. I like borrowing textbooks from the library because it helps me focus and get a lot of work done. One of the newest online resources available to students with a GCC username and password is Mango Languages. Thanks to the Alfred C. O’Connell Library students can now learn over 60 different languages. Check out a recent blog post about Mango Languages to learn more.

2. The City of Batavia 

Over the years I’ve become very impressed with Batavia’s growth. When I started attending GCC for the first time in 2005 there wasn’t much to do. Now the city is booming and there is a better variety of shops, restaurants, and fun times. The Batavia Business Improvement District has set up a great website and Facebook page with information on upcoming events and local businesses. Check out these websites to learn about the Batavia Farmers Market, Jackson Square Concerts, and more.

1.  Student Success Driven Professors, Faculty, and Staff

I truly believe that the biggest reason why I succeed here at GCC is because of the amazing professors and staff. They want to see their students succeed and are more than willing to give their students the tools for success. You can always find help on the Student OneStop website. This is a huge resource that is available to students that need help finding their advisors, learn how to get involved with clubs or sports, and even request your diploma.

photo-1Honorable Mention: The Spring 2015 Fashion Show Although I won’t be a student in the Spring of 2015 I am looking forward to attending the 34th annual fashion show. The talented students and designers work very hard to put together WNY’s longest running fashion show and they never disappoint. Check out our website to learn more about previous GCC Fashion Shows.

Dress Form Contest

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Those enrolled in the Fashion Design and Fashion Business programs at Genesee Community College were given the amazing opportunity to win dress forms donated to the school by PGM Dress Forms, the leading dress form manufacturer in the United States, based out of California.154836_580970075263689_1180436399_n The winners of these dress forms are career-driven, hardworking students, who are also extremely talented designers at GCC. The dress forms will make a large impact on these three creative women, and surely help them to accomplish future career goals, which they hold dearly and consider with upmost seriousness.

Accomplished students Candace Cooper, Alaina Shannon, and Natalie Brown are the winners of the 2014 Dress Form Contest! All of the girls wrote entry essays entailing what they would do if they won a PGM dress form, and how this award would help to accomplish their career goals. Candace Cooper writes, “When Professor Ehrhart initially notified me of the amazing opportunity of the dress form competition, I was overly thrilled at the news! Being that I am a design student I would love to own a dress form. I’ve always wanted to invest into one, but looking online, the prices were a little intimidating with them ranging from $1,500 to $2,000.” Candace’s collection entitled “ÉCLAT” will be featured in the upcoming GCC 33rd Annual Fashion Show entitled Ethereal. Alaina addresses why she would love to win a PGM dress form and how it would help her to achieve her artistic vision. In her contest essay, she states that, “By winning a dress form I would be capable of anything. As an artist, often times I conjure up creativity at the most random and unexpected times as my mind begins to soar into a new and exciting realm. When I visualize an idea in my head, I feel the urgency to get right to work. I sketch my ideas, gather and cut fabric, and begin to layout the image that is in my head. However, tedious measurements, and the annoyance of making a human stand shivering cold for forty minutes while being draped and pinned is a nuisance. I often find myself wishing I could constantly have access to a dress form so that I could put my creative, crazy mind at ease.”  Alaina’s designs will be featured in the upcoming GCC Fashion Show as well, in a scene entitled “Americana”. Natalie Brown envisions what it would be like to own a personal dress form in her contest essay; writing that, “If I had my own dress form, I could create my own design studio space in my room at my house. I currently have my very own sewing machine that I bought myself, so having my own dress form would complete my own personal working space.” Natalie Brown’s designs will also be featured in the upcoming GCC Ethereal Fashion Show. Her scene is called “Revival”, the featured clothing is previously owned and repurposed in order to be transformed from an old garment into a piece that is new and exciting. These dress forms are certainly in good hands; Congratulations Candace, Alaina, and Natalie, we can’t wait to see what amazing designs you all create for the upcoming fashion show and in the near future!

Also, on behalf of everyone in the fashion program at Genesee Community College I’d like to give a big thank you to PGM Dress Forms for donating three dress forms to these well-deserving girls, and to Professor Ehrhart and Professor Dudkowski for continuing to offer this amazing opportunity to GCC’s wonderfully talented design students.

-Ami Cornell

Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop: Candace Cooper’s Resilient Ambition

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The Fashion Design students at Genesee Community College are hard at work developing their clothing lines for the upcoming 33rd Annual Fashion show at GCC, entitled Ethereal. All of the scenes will feature pieces designed or reimagined by students at GCC; with their skills at work creativity is sure to ensue. securedownload (1)Candace Cooper is one of the many students who is a part of this extremely challenging, yet rewarding creative process. With help from Arianna Snead, who is serving as Candace’s assistant and brand representative, Candace is creating a line that is unlike anything you have ever seen before. As the creator and designer of ÉCLAT XXIIV, an ‘up and coming fashion empire’, Candace is creating designs that are classic, with a chic and sophisticated approach, while simultaneously studying in the design program at GCC. Candace connects directly to the meaning of her brand, ÉCLAT,securedownload (2) meaning “brilliant display or effect”, and XXIIV representing a significant date for her family and herself; the date on which her sister, Jakera, and her were adopted. Candace plans to continue pursuing her degree in Fashion in NYC next year; it is clear that she has high expectations for herself, Candace will not stop until she has achieved her goals and established her empire. Candace’s vigor for hard-work and constantly evolving and innovative designs are easily supported with evidence by simply stepping foot into the sewing room at GCC, she is a constant fixture there and a reminder of what it means to fight for your dream.  Candace’s awe-inspired designs will strut the runway at Genesee Community College on Saturday, April 26th, 2014 with the assistance of Arianna Snead. securedownloadOther happenings in the world of Candace Cooper include: an upcoming photo-shoot with a well-known photographer, news of her spring collection in April, and an anticipated website launch for ÉCLAT XXIIV next month as well. Most likely this will not be the last you hear of Candace Cooper, so keep an eye out for her designs at Fashion Week in a few years, for she is surely headed straight to the top.

-Ami Cornell

Blushing Brides

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On Friday March 28th, the GCC fashion students hosted an opportune visit from the Genesee County YWCA Executive Director Jeanne Walton. Walton joined a group of seven of these students in a photoshoot for the Batavia Daily promoting an upcoming fashion Show at the YWCA. This fashion show will serve as a preview for GCC’s own 33rd annual fashion show entitled, Ethereal. The girls posed in beautiful wedding gowns that were generously donated to GCC for the Ethereal fashion show by M.A. Carr bridal.

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The final look of the gowns and other clothing collections created by the Fashion Design students at Genesee Community College will be revealed at GCC’s Ethereal fashion show which will take place on Saturday, April 26, 2014.

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-Ami Cornell