Virgil Abloh is investing in the future of Black students. The multi-hyphenate creative—who is the artistic director of Louis Vuttion’s menswear collection and founder of his own buzzy label, Off-White—has announced that he has raised US$1 million through the recently minted Virgil Abloh™️ “Post-Modern” Scholarship Fund, which will provide scholarships to Black individuals looking to take up careers in the fashion industry. Not only will the organisation offer financial support, but it will also provide mentoring and access to career services.
“I’ve always been passionate about giving the next generation of students the same foundation for success that was given to me,” Abloh said in a statement. “That’s why I’m excited to launch this Fund in partnership with the FSF, which has an outstanding track record of helping college students achieve successful careers.”
FSF refers to the Fashion Scholarship Fund, a nonprofit that fosters workforce development in the U.S. that will help manage the programme. The organisation already awards $1.2 million each year to promising academics looking to succeed in disparate sectors of fashion—from design and merchandising to marketing and analytics.
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anyone that’s ever been in a meeting with me or a creative brainstorm or even a random iMessage chat knows that i’m forever fighting for the “17-year-old-version” of myself. what that specifically means is… all i want is for any young black kid to achieve a shorter path to their career goals, and if i can help with an open source approach to opening doors or messaging "how-i-did-it" along the whole way, then i've done my real job, not my actual job. i'm putting money, my resources, and my rolodex where my mouth is… just keeping it “Two Virgil’s” or more accurately “That many Virgil’s” in the slideshow above: i've started a scholarship fund for black students and raised $1 million so far, pre-announcement with the same manic creative brainstorm that got me here with the support of some of my collaborators and the @fashionscholarshipfund it’s called the Virgil Abloh™ "POST-MODERN" scholarship fund. ~ link in bio for more details. email me there. the goal is to make sure i'm not one of the few, but one of many in my industry…
“At the heart of the FSF’s mission is elevating the voices and creative visions of talented youth from underrepresented backgrounds who are the future leaders of our industry,” said Peter Arnold, the organisation’s executive director. “Virgil is a trailblazer and a game-changer, leveraging his considerable influence to effect change from within. We are grateful to have this opportunity to partner with him and his partners to impact the lives of so many deserving young people.”
Some of these partners include Louis Vuitton, Evian, Farfetch, and the New Guards Group, who, along with Abloh, contributed to the sizeable endowment. All are dedicated to stimulating inclusion in the fashion industry. As Abloh affirmed, “I’m also grateful to my partners for their donations, which are just a part of the long-term commitments I am working on with them to create greater opportunities for Black people inside and outside of their organisations.”
This article originally appeared on Harper’s BAZAAR US.