Popular clothing store Urban Outfitters (UO) released an exclusive 24-item capsule collection designed by five students from three Historically Black Colleges as part of UO’s HBCU Summer Class of 2021.
UO’s HBCU Summer Class of 2021 was an internship and mentorship program that acknowledged each student’s creativity and academic excellence. It lasted ten weeks, and the three institutions that participated were Clark Atlanta University, Howard University, and North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University. The outstanding students who partook in UO Summer Class of 2021 were Jasmine Logan, Jalen Bradford, Dacia Redmond (CAU), Janae Claxton (HU) and U’lia Hargrove (NCAT).
The students worked with Urban Outfitters’ buying team to select lifestyle and apparel items that reflect and celebrate their respective colleges’ cultures. The collection is also licensed by America’s best collegiate licensing company, CLC.
In an interview with ABC 11, North Carolina native and participant U’lia Hargrove shared her excitement about her role in UO’s new HBCU collection.
“The main thing I wanted to get across was basically a little history of my HBCU, and some of its culture, including our fonts, our colors, and some of the slogans that we have on-campus,” she said. “It feels kind of surreal. It feels kind of amazing to be able to kind of be a spokesperson or to bring advocacy to their market of individuals who do shop at Urban Outfitters.”
Hargrove also discussed the amount of effort she and her fellow students put into the collection.
“The five interns actually had full control of the designs. They chose every single aspect of the design – from the fabric to color, to designing the logos,” she said.
Urban Outfitters’ HBCU merch collection items include long-sleeved shirts, sweatpants, sweatshirts, collegiate jackets, tote bags, and even playing cards. Some of the pieces were also created with original designs by the students in the program.
“Being able to share our resources with HBCU talent, and to work alongside these students creatively as they developed their own product, made Summer Class enriching not only for our students but for every UO employee who got to be a part of the program,” Dalila Shannon, UO’s Summer Class Mentor and Women’s Divisional Merchandising Manager, told Teen Vogue.
Some of the revenue from purchased items go to each student’s HBCU.