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March 12, 2013 > Education in Fashion - a dream came true!

Education in Fashion - a dream came true!

Submitted By Ivy Wu
Photos By Steven Mazliach

It was truly amazing to see how our community came together to make the March 2 'Education in Fashion' show such a wonderful and memorable experience for everyone!

Arnold and Pricelle Valdecanas, with 'Weddings and Dreams' (a special occasions clothing store), had first proposed that Fremont Unified Student Store (FUSS) host a fashion show for high school students in Fremont Unified School District (FUSD). FUSS fully supported the idea, because it was completely in line with our goals - to provide a platform for our students to develop their potential and talents while bringing the community together to raise money to support FUSD schools and programs.

We named the show 'Education in Fashion,' because we wanted education to be a fashionable and exciting experience for our students and educators. Auditions were held, with students from all six high schools, and we were so moved to see many stepping outside their comfort zone to take on this new challenge.

Under the professional, attentive and caring guidance of our choreographer, Eddie Cotillon, a reputable fashion creative director and producer in the industry, students were inspired to practice their moves with discipline and conviction. Not only did the students learn to walk with poise and confidence, but they also developed friendships between schools and team spirit.

Mission San Jose High School not only allowed us to use its theater, but the school's Vice Principal Zack Larsen and Assistant Principal Carli Kim also participated as guest models along with American High School Principal Greg Bailey. In addition to playing guitar as accompaniment for a student singer, Warm Springs Elementary School Principal, Scott Iwata further impressed us by playing solo guitar while singing!

A Mission San Jose High School student designed artwork for our program book, and a local printer, Vision Graphics and Printing, gave us a big discount for printing. DeVry University, Fremont Flowers, SAVE (Safe Environment to Violent Environments), CBC (Citizens for Better Community), Weddings and Dreams plus many more purchased ads and donated door prizes. Dawn Breakers Lions Club members and many volunteers signed up to set up the stage walkway and decorate the theater.

Walter Garcia, our school district's TV Production Manager, volunteered his time and services to videotape both of the matinee and evening shows with the assistance of MSJ Cinema Production Club student members. Professional photographer Suvrangshu Ghosh donated his time to take photos. MSJ-TV and FUSS's interns with DDTV did their media coverage.

To make this show a full event for our students, Eddie Cotillon invited eight make-up artists to do make-up and hair for models at no cost to FUSS. Some of these make-up artists came from as far away as Mendocino County.

FUSS raised about $1,500 from this event. The money will be donated to all six FUSD high schools to support their Arts/Drama programs.

Even though it was a lot of hard work and tough coordination, we are very thankful to be able to provide such a fun learning experience for everyone. Here are some comments made by a few of the participants, which truly warm our hearts and encourage FUSS to move on to provide more fun events that support the needs of our students and schools:

MSJHS Vice-Principal Zack Larsen: "The event was so much fun. I was really happy to be a part of it. The kids had a great time and the cause is wonderful. By establishing FUSS you continue to give back to our community and it is so appreciated. I know this event will grow and grow!"

Warm Springs Elementary School Principal Scott Iwata: I am so glad I was able to contribute to another FUSS event that not only gives students an opportunity to express themselves in new ways, but also allows them to make a difference in their community. Thank you for leading FUSS events and giving everyone an opportunity to make a difference and participate."

Mission San Jose High School Model Akansha Prasad: "It was one of the best experiences I've ever had and am grateful to have had the opportunity to do it. I made tons of new friends, learned how to work a runway, and got over any stage fright. It was super fun and I'm definitely doing it again next year if I can."

Irvington High School Model Sami Khan: "I had a wonderful time participating in last year's fashion expo at HIS... and the thought of a larger audience with a wider range (this year) seemed intimidating at first but the fantastic choreographer, Eddie, and the supportive adults involved, reassured everyone that we would do great. By the end of the show, I had a ton of fun, made a bunch of new friends and had an amazing experience that I'll remember for a long time. Thanks FUSS and Weddings & Dreams!"

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