Taking the Leap to be a Changemaker
“I want to stress how important it is to put yourself out there,” said India Williams. “I'm so grateful that I pushed through my insecurities and showed up for myself.”
School of Fashion senior B.F.A. design student, India Williams, has been selected as a recipient of the 2023 Gucci Changemakers Scholarship. One of twelve recipients, Williams received a $20,000 scholarship to pursue her degree, in addition to mentorship and virtual internship opportunities through Gucci America. Since its conception in 2019, Gucci Changemakers has given over 70 students the opportunity to pursue degrees in fashion, as well as gain invaluable experiences from mentors and internships.
Williams learned about the Gucci Changemakers Scholarship from Professor Archana Mehta, who serves as Fashion Design Student Competitions Supervisor for the school. The School of Fashion strives to provide students access to unique opportunities and to mentor them through successful applications. “I worked on the project every day. I wrote my bio and essay during the first couple of days and I filmed my video the day before the new deadline. I spent the next two days working on the portfolio portion,” said Williams.
The scholarship program provides funding to undergraduate students with unmet financial needs and focuses on students from diverse backgrounds who live or study in one of the 12 Gucci North America Changemakers cities or plan to attend or currently attend a historically black college or university.
When asked about what impact the scholarship has on her, Williams replied, “The $20,000 scholarship has had a great impact on my college experience this year. It has allowed me to fund not only my living expenses but also my B.F.A. fashion collection that I'm planning on submitting to the Kent State Fashion Show.”
“If I didn't go out and push myself, things wouldn't have changed for me and I am in such bliss reminiscing on this experience. I encourage everyone else to also imagine their higher selves and position themselves to embody that because so many great things may come from it.”
Gucci Changemakers Scholarships will release the 2024 scholarship in the last week of November and the deadline to apply is the first week of February. It is open to any student of a diverse background, who lives or studies in one of the 12 Gucci North America Changemakers cities or plans to attend or currently attend a Historically Black College and University (HBCU). Students must be enrolled in fashion design and merchandising and other creative or business-oriented programs.