00:00:08 Hannah Skaran
Hi, my name is Hannah Skaran and you're listening to U Chicago in real life where we sit down with real students doing real things at U Chicago. Today I'm speaking with Selma, a creative writing major in the college. She participates in Moda.
00:00:23 Hannah Skaran
Founded in 2003, Moda is a student organization dedicated to promoting fashion at U Chicago. Let's hear what she has to say.
00:00:32 Hannah Skaran
All right, Selma, thank you so much for joining us on the podcast today. If you could just start by introducing yourself, what's your name? Your year, your major, and what did you have for breakfast today?
Awesome, yeah my name is Selma. I am a second year in the college. Creative writing. Major thinking about doubling.
Not sure in what so stay tuned for that. And what did I have for breakfast this morning? Kinda mad.
I didn't get to go to the dining hall 'cause I have a really early Class 8 Ritz crackers that I got from Midway Mart with marine dollars.
00:01:07 Hannah Skaran
So, Selma, you're involved with rsos like Moda and Fire Escape films. How long have you been interested in these rows? And before you Chicago? What was your history with that subject matter?
So before you Chicago, I would say pretty much nothing. I had no idea that I was going to try to join like a film production society when I was going to get to college.
I had no idea that I was going to try to write for a fashion publication. These opportunities just sort of popped up out of nowhere. I remember I got here and during my orientation.
Week there was the second year in my house and she said, Oh my God, I love your pants like you should.
You should try out and write for like Moda or you should. You should join uh Rashing Club and I was like thank you so much. First of all I love these pants too.
And she was just so sweet about it. And she made me want to apply. So I applied and I ended up making it onto the writing team and almost that's great.
00:02:09 Hannah Skaran
Well, you're certainly, uh, you're you're very keen on the art scene at Uchicago, which I think is great. To get that perspective. So you talked a little bit.
00:02:17 Hannah Skaran
About being accepted to the writing team for Moda. Can you talk a little bit more about what that recruitment process looked like?
00:02:25 Hannah Skaran
Did you just need to show up? Did you have to submit a packet or what did that look like?
Yeah for sure. So for Moda. UM they had like sort of like a general meeting after the huge RSO fair that Chicago Chicago has every year and they had this one general meeting.
The board came up. They talked about their positions. There's tons of different teams. You can do a sewing workshop.
For an entire quarter where you make garments for our winter fashion show, which was like a super intro.
Thread they also have styling teams and writing teams, which I'm part of and executive boards et cetera, et cetera.
So there's a lot of different ways to get involved, but I knew that what I really wanted to do was to get my writing out there.
So I applied for the writing team and basically you just fill out this little Google Form application. It's not super stressful.
You answer a few short answer questions and then you submit a writing sample, which is pretty standard for. I think most clubs that you're going to be trying to be published in.
They want to know what your voice sounds like, and this doesn't have to be like an insane like first draft of a novel or anything like that.
It can be like an essay that you wrote. They just want to get a feel for sort of what you sound like. And so I submitted a short piece.
They really loved it and that ended up being the piece that I got published for my first quarter. So that was really awesome and they're like no insane like competition about it. Everyone just wants to try their best to be part of the team, and so that's really lovely.
00:04:00 Hannah Skaran
Love it, that's great, so could you talk about sort of the way that modal like that leadership structure? I know you mentioned like a board and things like that.
Yeah, so mode is actually going through a lot of changes right now.
We're always trying to evolve and try to get people to like experience more of the different sides of the club.
And be exposed to the different teams.
So actually what we're doing right now is usually it was pretty segregated at writer. It was sort of like, oh, write your pieces and we'll have writers meetings and we'll pitch ideas based on like the quarterly theme and then sort of talk to your editor after you get your after you send your first rough draft in and then fix it, and then you send.
The final draft in, and that's published, and that's how it sort of went for the writers. But now it's actually really amazing, is that?
They're trying to switch people between the teams so that if you are writing one quarter, maybe you want to try your hand at styling for the magazine and a quarter and sort of getting this sort of interdisciplinary interaction between the different teams so that someone is not just isolated in the writing team and they can actually go to shoots and meet up with photographers.
And the makeup artists and the other styling teams to make it a lot more cohesive of a club, which I.
I think is a really great sort of push that we're going through right now.
00:05:21 Hannah Skaran
That sounds nice because it seems like.
00:05:24 Hannah Skaran
Anyone can contribute, regardless of what their individual skill set is, and I think that's a nice. Removing the barrier to entry.
00:05:32 Hannah Skaran
Maybe for some students is like if they just want to write they can just right. So I I think that's nice, but if they want to have more exposure they can too. You've certainly talked about your your contribution so far.
00:05:44 Hannah Skaran
To the group, but I'm curious.
00:05:47 Hannah Skaran
A lot of our shows at Uchicago have like one big thing that they work towards throughout the year, so Mab has summer breeze.
00:05:55 Hannah Skaran
Model UN has their big conference that they do. What is the big thing that Moda does?
Oh, that 100% is the winter fashion show.
It is such a huge event.
It is, it is incredibly. It takes so much hard work in planning. Behind the scenes, there's looking for for a venue for catering for gift bags.
When you when we sell this certain amount of tickets, some tickets come with seating. Some tickets are like general area. Some tickets come with some sort of these little gift.
So there's so much planning that goes into that. There's also just the people who are doing the fashion Workshop for that tier. Autumn quarter have been working their butts off to produce different looks that they're going to.
OK, so there's models who so anyone can be a model. Actually this is really cool where they just call for model auditions.
You go, you bring a pair of heels and then you just strut around a room and they say, OK, you're in the show. You're in the show and so that's also a really amazing thing. And it's like a legit.
Event like it is, it is insanely well.
Well produced, and yeah, it's a really incredible sight to see all this student work just like showcase in a really professional way.
00:07:13 Hannah Skaran
I've definitely seen the line out the door of Reynolds Club going to the Moda auditions in the winter. So yes, I'm getting a sense.
00:07:22 Hannah Skaran
That sort of writing and that side of the creative process is appealing to you, and you may not have an answer to this right now, but does your involvement in either of these groups.
00:07:34 Hannah Skaran
Have any fit into your plans for the future or is it just sort of something that you do for fun?
Oh absolutely Moda is just a great way to sort of get more stories out there and get some practice in.
I'm looking to write screenplays, pitch TV shows in the future, so I can definitely see this being helpful.
For the future.
00:07:55 Hannah Skaran
How would you recommend if someone is listening? Who is interested? How do they start? The process of getting involved once they're a student on campus?
Honestly, just you can get involved in so many ways. So many people have different stories of how they found out about their clubs.
As I told you, I found out about these things through people in my house. The community over me, but you know, you have the RSO fair. Just talking to people in your classes. Hearing from upperclassmen.
Alum etc going and doing research yourself. You can find pretty much anything that covers the scope of U, Chicago's passions and interests.
There are so many facets to Moda. It covers the magazine, which is what I write for. It covers the blog which is updated on a more casual weekly basis. It covers podcasts. We've just started branching out into podcasting.
Check out our Instagram Moda magazine. It's it's insane how far the reaches come for Moda. And then of course, the workshops. If people are interested in learning how to sew, etc. But yeah, I think.
A lot of different ways to get involved with Moda, no matter sort of your interest. If you're interested in photography, you have the photography section.
If you want to correspond with brands and talk to like local brands like Akira who have been really cooperative in the past and and try to get clothes to also show.
In the magazine for shoots, there's a lot of different networking things as well like that, so it covers not just the creative side of fashion, but the business side. If that's also what you're in.
00:09:42 Hannah Skaran
00:09:44 Hannah Skaran
I'm going to show you I just dropped some in the chat. I'm going to show you pictures of the main cast of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, and I would like you to use your fashion expertise to tell me who you think is best dressed and why.
All right, automatically drawn to Mike. The TV kid isn't his name. Mike TV.
In this beautiful pastel yellow cowboy number with the fringe Cowboys were super in, Cowboys were super in in like 2019.
I think 2019, 2018 with like Orville Peck and and I just like his vibes. I think Cowboys are still really cool.
Let's see, I like the. I like the cinched waist of what's her face, Violet.
00:10:32 Hannah Skaran
I think that's Violet, yeah?
Clean the drop ways. Sort of like yeah Peter Pan Peter Pan collar that that is wearing but also just like Augustus Gloop's his like schoolboy outfit with the short shorts. I kind of dig that I would wear that.
I would wear that with the high socks.
00:10:57 Hannah Skaran
Love it, OK?
00:10:59 Hannah Skaran
Amazing analysis and we'll try to throw this picture.
Yeah, my TV's got my heart.
00:11:03 Hannah Skaran
I I agree, I I his outfit did not stand out to me.
00:11:08 Hannah Skaran
It's the colors a little bit more muted, but now that you mention it, I I have to agree that I I enjoy the fit, so we'll try to throw this picture in the show notes if we can.
00:11:18 Hannah Skaran
So if anyone is listening they can. They can chime in as well.
00:11:23 Hannah Skaran
On a similar note, could you talk about who would you most want to style for a red carpet and how would you style them?
Oh God, I'm a writer. I'm not a stylist. Please spare me. Oh goodness.
Oh, who would I want a style?
I don't know. I feel like I'm not super into any like celebrities right now. Uhm, maybe I'd want to style myself.
I'd go out there, I'll style myself. Hey, let's say I'm going for my directorial debut, alright, I'm rocking the MIC TV.
I'm marking the MIC TV pastel yellow fringe, but I'm pairing it with Augustus Gloop's little short shorts. I'm putting on them some bright yellow heels to match the MIC TV.
Little top we have going on there and I'm wearing you see that little green bandana here on his neck. I'm wearing knee high socks that are that green color up.
And I think that's the whole look. And then I'm wearing Willy Wonka's top hat.
00:12:37 Hannah Skaran
Incredible that perfect answer, thank you.
00:12:41 Hannah Skaran
Uh, I. I think you've maybe alluded to it a little, but but maybe not. Maybe I I'm misinterpreting what your answer would be from from the beginning of history until now, which era had the best looks?
Rococo, rococo in France I love OK, I'm really big. I was really big into corsets. I think I am right now.
I'm still I'm still vibing with the corset train. I I. I just think there's something so elegant about it and then the huge, bustling skirts and just the extravagance.
Of it all, it's personally not my aesthetic. I don't think I could see myself walking down the quad in full rococo sort of garb, but it is nothing if not beautiful.
And I I'm obsessed with it.
00:13:34 Hannah Skaran
Yeah no, no argument here. Final question Lightning round yes or no hats? I mean I think we know your answer yes.
I love hats.
00:13:46 Hannah Skaran
Great Selma, there's anything else I always like to throw in at the end. Like if there's anything else you want to throw out there about your experiences with these groups.
00:13:55 Hannah Skaran
Anything you have a strong opinion on now is your time to shine it. Please feel free, but if not, no worries.
Yeah, I just want to say if you're scared about joining a bunch of our shows because you're worried about like the time commitment and the time constraints, just know that we're all students.
Everyone on the board is a student. Everyone who's running behind the scenes is a student and they know they know how much work we have on a daily basis and so.
You're never going to be punished for having an assignment do or having an essay do before you can write your piece for Moda.
They're super lenient, so even if you if you just want to try these things out, and even if you can't commit 100% of your time enough, you know do as much as you can, and that's enough for everyone, right?
So that's something that has been super invaluable to me here because I'm busy. I get really, really busy like most people and it's really nice to know that they won't just sort of leave me out if I am not going to give 100% all the time, so.
00:14:59 Hannah Skaran
I think that's a great thing that I'm glad you touched on because I think in admissions that's a question that we get a lot is.
00:15:06 Hannah Skaran
Oh my gosh, these students are all doing these amazing things. How in the world do they have time? So I think that's a really helpful perspective.
00:15:13 Hannah Skaran
So to anyone listening, I hope that that puts you at ease a little bit more.
Yeah, thank you guys so much for having me. It's been wonderful to be here.
00:15:24 Hannah Skaran
Thanks so much Selma.