Business People and Community

Passion for fashion and luxury takes center stage

The Luxury and Fashion Club student organization introduces University of Miami students to the world of vogue and opulence through biweekly meetings—as well as panel discussions and networking opportunities that include professionals.
Annia Elena Lopez and Linda Geib are members of the Luxury and Fashion Club at the University. Photo: Jenny Hudak/University of Miami

Annia Elena Lopez and Linda Geib are members of the Luxury and Fashion Club at the University of Miami. Photo: Jenny Hudak/University of Miami

Linda Geib recalls going to the supermarket as a child. Every time she arrived, the budding fashionista ran to the magazine aisle and plopped herself in front of the latest editions of her favorite publications. There, she sat skimming every fashion magazine available until it was time to go. 

Geib, a senior studying marketing, wanted to find a way to merge her studies with her passion for fashion. That’s when she joined the Luxury and Fashion (LUX) Club at the University of Miami. 

“One thing about LUX, and about this school, is that it gives you the confidence to figure out where you fit in,” Geib said. Since she doesn’t design clothes, the student worried that she’d never find a way to pursue a career in the fashion industry. Her experience as a member of LUX opened her eyes to a side of the field that isn’t just about creating apparel. 

LUX is a student organization aimed at educating and connecting students interested in the luxury and fashion industries. Through biweekly meetings, panel discussions, and online events, students can explore their interest in the industry and identify with one another.  

The students spend their time bonding over fashion lookbooks, discussing industry trends, and learning about everything from opulent fashion brands to high-end car models.

“It’s important to me that people know there is a place for them and what they like. To me, luxury is so much more than just clothes. If you have an interest in luxury goods, cars, fashion, you have a place to engage in a conversation about that,” said Geib.

Geib and Annia Elena Lopez, vice president of LUX, also work together to connect LUX’s members to the fashion industry. Last semester, the organization hosted speakers from companies like Estée Lauder, Anne Klein, and LVMH (Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy). During these meetings, panelists engaged with students about their career paths and offered insight on how to navigate the industry.

The group also convenes to host conversations about current events and trends, like New York Fashion Week. “We’ve done Met Gala discussions and Bridal Fashion Week, and ask each other what we like, or don’t like. We try to incorporate as much discussion as possible with our club,” Lopez said.

A senior studying marketing and communications, Lopez said that she believes fashion runs in her blood. Her grandmother founded Maria Elena Headpieces and Accessories, a luxury bridal accessory brand. Since she was young age, Lopez has been working with her family handmaking headpieces and accessories for their clients. Today, she serves as the chief marketing officer for the family business and shares her expertise with her peers at the University.

In addition to its guest speakers, LUX links students to internship and job opportunities within the industry through weekly newsletters. The organization, which started in 2020, already has nearly 200 members.

Trinidad Callava, a lecturer in the Miami Herbert Business School, highlights the significance of fostering community to develop the next generation of luxury designers and industry experts at the University.

“We have [students] at the U who are going to be the ones that will develop the next luxury products and services,” she said. Callava is the faculty advisor for LUX and has taught her course, Luxury Marketing, at the Miami Herbert Business School since 2018. She pointed out that there is a high demand and interest in the luxury market. 

The lecturer also spearheads an annual study abroad experience for students in Florence, Italy, where attendees take a hands-on learning approach to fashion. During the trip, students visit storefronts of renowned brands such as Gucci, Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Prada, and Moncler.

The next LUX panel will take place on Tuesday, Feb. 21, at 7:30 p.m. in the Shalala Student Center featuring representatives from Bal Harbor Shops and Dior, as well as a private stylist.

Geib and Lopez agree that students who are interested in learning more about the industry should join LUX and discover the cachet of luxury and fashion.

“I think it’s important for us to inspire confidence in our members. It can be daunting to job search, even more so in the fashion and luxury industry,” Geib said. “Providing a place on campus where students can learn more, hear from experts, and share is what LUX offers.”