Mentor Moment with Instructor Angela Kunz.

Angela Kunz surrounded by a fashion class

     On a warm and sunny autumn afternoon, I had a candid conversation with Fashion Design Adjunct Instructor Angela Kunz (or Mrs. K as she prefers to be called by students) on SUNY Ulster’s beautiful campus. We discussed what advice she has for students entering the field of fashion merchandising, design, and the evolving work force as a whole.

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“What led you to a career in fashion instruction?”

“After studying fashion at Pratt Institute in Lower Manhattan I began working in the fashion industry in the 1990’s.”

After living in New York City and achieving what she thought was her ‘dream’- the success of celebrities and the members of popular television shows wearing her designs, Mrs. K felt herself dealing more with the business side of the industry and less with the creativity side that she loved. “I began feeling completely drained and unfulfilled – that’s when I moved up to the Hudson Valley and began to ask myself “How can I keep fashion in my life without being directly involved in it?””

A few years after moving to and working in the Hudson Valley an adjunct position in the Marist College Fashion Department opened up and as Mrs. K put it  “-it was a manifestation of working adjacent to the fashion industry and with students!”

“Would you change anything about how you got to where you are?”

Mrs. K quickly responded “No!-everything happened in a perfect transition right where I wanted to live and work-It’s all about finding the balance.”  

 “What would be your top advice to someone thinking of entering the fashion industry?”

  “Be willing to fail, and do not settle! Look at your options and find a way to keep your truest dreams alive, and always aspire to reach your full potential.”  

 “4 words you would use to describe a leader in your field?”

 Mrs. K paused and after a moment she said “Innovative, passionate, and simultaneously endlessly motivated about the field, and finally someone who is dedicated.”   

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