PHOTOS: Fashion Show and Tell at USF celebrates every body

Around 15 people gathered at the Marshall Student Center (MSC) Amphitheater on Monday at 7 p.m. for mocktails, snacks and body-positive fashion. 

Eight models, including current students and alumni, walked the small stage to showcase an outfit they feel confident in. 

Elizabeth Volmy, student body vice president, said it was important to her, as a student and nutrition major, to host the “Model Call: Fashion Show and Tell” event. 

“I want to go into the medical field and be a plastic reconstructive surgeon,” Volmy said. “Confidence is a big part of who we are, so to be able to instill that into someone else is really amazing.” 

Because she loves to dress up, it was the perfect opportunity, Volmy said. 

Volmy read descriptions of why each model loved their bodies while they walked to “…Ready For It” by Taylor Swift, “Confident” by Demi Lovato and other self-love pop anthems. 

USF alumna Ali Allah, one of the models, said she even crocheted the cardigan she chose to wear. During the panel after the short fashion show, Allah said her definition of beauty was her partner as he smiled and covered his face with his hands, sat on the fourth row of chairs. 

Her friends have influenced the way she sees her own beauty, Allah said. 

“They have pushed me to believe in myself,” she said.

Three models, including Allah, spoke on social media’s impact on body image, self-love and their journey accepting themselves. 

Senior Muhtaism Ahmed, an informational science major, wore a gray suit with yellow details on his shirt and spoke on the pressures of having a “hyper masculine” figure.

Ahmed also emphasized the harm of social media influencers on workout routines, diets and sport-enhancing drugs.

Kameron Talley, a health promotion & well-being coordinator for the Center of Student Well-Being, said the event was planned to be set during National Eating Disorder Awareness week, from Monday-Friday. A counselor from the campus Counseling Center was also present during the event. 

Junior Harley Vastola, a geography and informational science major, said growing up in a Catholic suburban home did not allow them to express themselves. 

Now, Vastola said they love to embrace their androgynous style, such as wearing a skirt over pants, in a way their parents would never approve of. 

“The fact that my mother hates it makes it even better,” Vastola said. 

The pressures of having the ideal body are felt by everyone, Vastola said. 

Allah said fear of other people’s stares prevents her from wearing open-toe shoes. She went through chemotherapy and has scarring on her feet. Because of the negative depiction of scarred skin online, she said she would rather not expose hers. 

“They depict people with scars like monsters,” Allah said “I have literally never seen a positive representation of scars.” 

With her friends by her side, reminding her of her journey and strength through graduation, chemo-therapy and now applying for the LSATS, Allah said she is more confident than ever. 

“I was able to watch my hair grow, be healthy, dye it,” Allah said. “I love it.”

Talley told students to do something for themselves this week and ensure they feel confident.

Julia Saad, NEWS EDITOR; Delaney Torres, CORRESPONDENT

Julia Saad started as a news correspondent in fall 2022. During Saad's tenure at The Oracle, she has covered a variety of news. However, Saad's favorite topic to cover is being able to place readers in the ambient environments of USF events.