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Kering & Parsons to host 'Empowering Imagination' contest
May '13
Parsons The New School for Design and Kering have announced the second annual “Empowering Imagination” competition, which provides graduating Parsons BFA Fashion Design students the opportunity to earn an internship within one of Kering’s 19 luxury and sport & lifestyle brands.

For the first time, Kering and Parsons are partnering with Style.com, which will profile each of the 14 student finalists selected by Parsons from May 2nd through May 15th.

A panel of fashion insiders, which includes Eco Age’s Livia Firth, Style.com’s Dirk Standen, Barney’s New York’s Dennis Freedman, Kering’s Laurent Claquin, Paper Magazine’s Mickey Boardman, and Parsons’ Simon Collins, will meet to judge the work of these 14 finalists and choose two winners.

“At Kering, we believe in nurturing the next generation of talent and staying in close touch with the upcoming young designers. The “Empowering Imagination” competition is a strong platform for students who possess incredible potential to showcase their work and unique designs across several categories.

"At Kering, we look to foster innovation by building bridges with universities, business, and digital communities within the fashion industry.” said Laurent Claquin, head of Kering Americas.

Based on Kering’s defining theme of “Empowering Imagination,” the competition engages top 2013 graduates of the Parsons BFA Fashion Design program. Parsons has selected 14 finalists for consideration, two of which will be awarded internships. Last year’s winners were Jin Kay, whose women’s wear collection landed him an internship at Gucci, and Melanie Seligman, whose unique shoe and accessory collection won her an internship at McQ Alexander McQueen.

“Given the tremendous success of our first collaboration with Kering last year, we cannot be more pleased to be once again partnering on this competition,” said Simon Collins, dean of the School of Fashion at Parsons.

“For these students, the opportunity to have their work presented to such a wide audience of fashion influencers, and also gain experience working with one of Kering’s illustrious brands, is one few fashion designers are afforded.”

Parsons students are chosen to participate in this competition based on the quality and conceptual vision of their thesis collections, as well as their ability to communicate the point of view of their thesis collection.

A student’s thesis collection is the capstone experience within Parsons BFA Fashion Design program. Students can specialize in women’s wear, menswear, children’s wear and accessories, as well as pursue a focus on sustainability or a specific market such as eveningwear, sport or luxury.

Style.com will not only profile the 14 finalists on their website but will also host a session to mentor the students. Once again, Kering and Parsons are partnering with Barney’s New York, which will showcase looks from the thesis collections of the 14 finalists in its flagship store on Madison Avenue.


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