Students strut all shapes, sizes in Fashion Rocks

Students strut all shapes, sizes in Fashion Rocks

The third annual Fashion Rocks and So Does My Body fashion show took place Feb. 24 in the Ferguson Center Ballroom. The fashion show featured male and female students of all shapes and sizes and was a part of Body Appreciation Week and National Eating Disorders Week.

“The effect we want to have on the campus community is to raise awareness about how important it is to have a positive body image,” said Kerry Luke, staff psychologist at the counseling center. “So many women and men report that they don’t feel good about their bodies, especially college students. If we can get to the point where we help people feel better about themselves, we can get people thinking more critically about why it is they don’t feel good about themselves and try to combat those thoughts and ideas.”

The show was hosted by the Eating Disorders Strategic Team and was co-sponsored by a number of organizations including Project Health through the Student Health Center. Michelle Harcrow, adviser of Project Health, said the fashion show is a great way to showcase positive self-image, and Project Health members look forward to participating each year.

“I think [the fashion show] has a very positive effect on the campus community,” Harcrow said. “Every year that we’ve performed this, it’s been a really great opportunity for students to be proud of themselves and display who they are inside and out, absent of any social norms.”

The fashion show started off with all of the models walking down the runway in their favorite pair of jeans. After an intermission, the models came back out and walked the runway in a casual, going-out or formal cocktail outfit that makes them feel most comfortable.

This was Debra Flax’s first time participating in the fashion show.

“I grew up as an overweight teen, so I always had self-esteem issues,” said Flax, a junior majoring in journalism. “Since losing a whole bunch of weight, I’ve loved my body more and more. Doing stuff like this is more important to bolstering my self-esteem. I think the fashion show can have a big effect on campus. Students can see different body types. It can help older women, younger women, women of any age, seeing others express their love for their body.”

Luke said there was more of an emphasis on getting male participants in the show this year. Clifton Jones, a sophomore majoring in management information systems, was one of four males who participated in this year’s show.

“A lot of my time is consumed in projects, working and doing school and I haven’t really had a break, so I kind of made this my break,” Jones said. “The idea behind [the fashion show] is really good. You can just come out here, be normal, have fun and pretend you’re a model.”

Information has been available on campus all week for Body Appreciation Week, but the Fashion Show is the biggest event of the week, according to Luke.

“In high school I suffered from a mild form of anorexia,” said Julie Hill, a freshman majoring in fashion retail. “I had friends that snapped me out of it. I think it’s really good for people to see women and men who are proud to be the size that they are the shape that they are and who they are, and to really flaunt it and be like ‘I love the way I am.’”

The fashion show has evolved since it began three years ago, Harcrow said, and the event will likely continue to occur.

“I don’t see this going away,” Luke said. “I think we really have fun with this and we’re always just making it better and enhancing it. I think our goal is to keep getting more people to attend. It has such a positive message and it’s such a unique thing, I think, that’s done here on this campus, so we want to keep it.”

Flax said, “I think it’s a great idea to have it again and if they do it again, which I hope they do, I will definitely be in line for modeling.”

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