Students poured into USG's styling competition fashion show, "Advance Your Swagger," on
Feb. 29, featuring guest Fonzworth Bentley as celebrity judge and speaker.
The theme of the free event was "dressing professionally doesn't have to cost a fortune."
The show was held from 6 to 8:30 p.m. in the Social Hall. It was co-sponsored by Fashion
Student Association, Student Life and Barnes and Noble.
The night began with coordinator and host Kadejah Henderson introducing Bentley, who is
best known as a musician, author and host of MTV's From G's to Gents.
"It doesn't matter what you wear, the attitude with which you wear it is the most important
thing," Bentley said to a crowd of star-struck students. "The most important part of a suit is
the smile you bring along with it."
The event commenced with a short autobiography of Bentley and an excerpt from his new
book, Advance Your Swagger: How to Use Manners, Confidence and Style to Get Ahead.
A fashion show followed, judged by Bentley, Shantell Reid, adjunct lecturer in the fashion
department, and Lisa August, associate director of the career development center.
The judges critiqued student stylists including Lexus Banks, Tia Gadson, Emilee Rosa, Dany
Marcelino, Joshua Owens and TJ Singletary.
The stylists' challenge was to create a fashionable outfit that was appropriate for the
business world for under $10 using clothing from the Amvets thrift store.
Each stylist had two models they introduced and created outfits for.
Models included Buffalo State students Carlisy Abreu, Nyala Alleyne, Kireshia Briland,
Anthony Brown, Todd Colas, Steven Elias, T.J. Jarmond, Thao Nguyen, Bayo Olaloko,
Julianne Reich, Elias Taveras and Fatima Toure.
"You just look so cute," August said, referring to the high-waist, cropped brown slacks and
gold-chained black blazer Alleyne wore.
"I don't remember my clothes being this cool when I was growing up," she added as Elias
stepped out in black parachute pants and a lavender collared shirt.
Each model was critiqued individually by all three judges, who pointed out their likes and
dislikes of each ensemble.
The event proceeded with Bentley's final comments and the announcement of first and
second place winners. The first place winner received Bentley's signed book, promotion
on the USG website and a digital camera, while the runner up received a $100 gift card to
Express clothing store. All stylists and models received signed awards for participating.
Rosa took first place out of the designers, with Alleyne dressed in a brown and blue striped
silk shirt, and Olaloko dressed in a black cardigan and gray ivy cap as her models.
Gadson took second, with Abreu sporting a polka dot sheer blouse and coral high-waist
cropped pants, and Brown in khaki pants and multi-colored bowtie.
The event concluded with a book signing by Bentley and closing remarks by all
"The show was a success," Henderson said with a smile. "If anyone follows in my footsteps
for next year, it can be bigger and better."
Philicia Mongomery can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.