The first-place team in the 2022 NRF Foundation Student Challenge was unveiled April 13 in New York City at the NRF Foundation Honors, presented by American Express and PwC.
For the 2022 NRF Foundation Student Challenge, teams pitched new, private label brands for Kohl’s that embodied the meaning of diversity and promoted equity and inclusion. The concepts that rose to the top were from:
- Columbia College Chicago (Rachel Baranowski, Ella Bondy, Rosa Terenzio and Riley Thorpe)
- Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (Tooba Athar, Haley Shannon and K-Lynn Ward)
- Columbia College Chicago (Karolina Blachowska, Vanesa Paramo, Ethan Partington and Ansley Young)
The results of the competition were announced by Kohl’s CEO and The Visionary 2020 Michelle Gass.
“I’m so impressed by the ideas from all three of these teams,” Gass says. “Retailers have a unique opportunity to drive positive and meaningful change, and each of these ideas expressed a more inclusive and equitable community for all.”
Tooba Athar, Haley Shannon and K-Lynn Ward from the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (FIDM) were each awarded a $5,000 scholarship in the business competition.
See the moment the top team from FIDM was announced in the video below:
“This has been such a learning opportunity,” Ward says. “We believe diversity and inclusion is a celebration of different voices, perspectives and opinions, and we know that is the true future of retail.”
Undergraduates can create a team of two to four to compete in the 2023 NRF Foundation Student Challenge. The business case is due Oct. 9 and is open to students of all majors. And you can learn more about programs and resources from the NRF Foundation – including its industry-recognized RISE Up training and credentials – that help people of all backgrounds build life-changing careers here.