Thursday, January 15, 2009

Passion For Fashion Winners Get $6,000 In Scholarships

Kristyn Rethaford of San Bernardino, with the dress and matching purse she designed. The Gorman High School senior won The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire’s Passion for Fashion competition with this dress.

(SAN BERNARDINO, Calif.) Kristyn Rethaford and Desiree Bonds, high school seniors in the Inland Empire each won $3,000 scholarships from The Art Institute of California Inland Empire. The two high school students were winners of the Passion for Fashion competition.

The Art Institutes, of which The Art Institute of California Inland Empire is a member, sponsors this event yearly. This is the first year the Inland Empire’s Fashion program has entered this competition.

The Art Institute Passion for Fashion Competition was created to encourage and reward young fashion design, marketing, merchandising and retail management talent at the high school level.

Two hundred sixty high school seniors across North America applied for the competition nationwide.

The winner of the national competition will receive a full tuition scholarship to study at a participating Art Institutes location and an all-expense-paid trip to New York City for Fashion Week in February 2009, a “meet and greet” at Seventeen Magazine’s offices and lunch with staff at Seventeen Magazine.

Rethaford of San Bernardino is the winner in the Fashion Design category. Not only will she receive a $3,000 scholarship but is also competing in the nationwide competition held in February 2009. She is currently a senior at Gorman High School in Redlands and plans on attending The Art Institute of California Inland Empire in the Fall of 2009.

“This experience has shown me that I really do want to be in the fashion industry and I truly enjoyed doing this project,” said Rethaford.

Rethaford’s inspiration for the designing the dress came from the Jazz Era of the 1920s. A black and gold formal dress, just below the knee, sleeveless gold bodice and gold skirt with black velvet embellished roses. Black beaded trim around the back and bottom of the skirt. Accented with a scarf with roses cut into the fabric and finished with a black hat with feathers and beads.

Bonds of Apple Valley is the winner in the Retail Management category. She will received a $3,000 scholarship for the fall 2009 quarter at the Inland Empire Art Institute. She is currently a senior at Silverado High School in Victor Valley, California. Bonds plans on attending The Art Institute of California Inland Empire in the fall of 2009. Bond’s heard about the competition through an admissions director.

She organized a portfolio describing her idea of an Urban Fashion Retail Store which including a catalog of clothing item examples and a plan for a grand opening.

“This competition has definitely taken my interest to the next level,” said Bonds. I am really looking forward to attended the fashion program in the fall of 2009.”

Fashion Design Director of the Art Institute of Inland Empire and member of the Fashion group International, Sherry West said “These are young talented students with drive; they have a sense of style and workmanship which is going to take them a long way in this industry.”

She is impressed with Rutheford and Bonds creativity for such a lofty competition. West says, “These are the go getters; the next rising stars.”

“This is truly a great opportunity for high school seniors. A competition like this gets their foot in the door to future employers,” said West.

These seniors were recently presented at Fashion Night to friends, family and potential fashion students.

As the fashion department gets more exposure to the exciting and popular program at the Art Institute of California Inland Empire more competition is expected by the November deadline in 2009.

“There are many fashion competitions in college but usually not offered at the high school level and especially at a nation wide level.” “These high school seniors have an early incentive to create a future for themselves early on,” said West.

To be eligible, students must be a high school senior scheduled to graduate in 2009. In the Fashion Design category, entry requirements include submission of an original eveningwear design. In the Fashion Marketing & Merchandising and Retail Management category, entry requirements include a finished product or plan.

The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire offers Bachelor of Science degrees in Game Art & Design, Culinary Management, Graphic Design, Web Design & Interactive Media, Interior Design, Fashion Design and Retail Management, and Media Arts & Animation. There are also Associate of Science degrees in Graphic Design and Culinary Arts. Each program is offered on a year-round basis, allowing students to work uninterrupted toward their degrees.

It’s not too late to start classes at The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire. Courses begin Jan. 12 and classes are offered in the day, evening and on weekends for new and reentry students.

For more information or a tour, call The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire at (909) 915-2100.
The Art Institute of California-Inland Empire is one of The Art Institutes (, a system of over 40 education institutions throughout North America, providing an important source of design, media arts, fashion and culinary arts professionals.