Student Speak


angelica ” Ahhhh! The places you’ll go and the people you’ll meet through In True Fashion. I am so grateful for the program for many reasons. As a student in a low-income community, learning about business, managing your money and marketing are things you do in the future (and that is if you are lucky). I honestly feel that as students we are getting a private school education and that we must take advantage of it. The program has allowed me to see life through a new lens. I am privileged to say that this class has opened many doors in my creativity to further my ambitious future. Frankly, I feel like this is just what students need to give them a boost of confidence to live free and live out your goals. I have such a strong connection with Nancy Gale, not only because she is comforting in all aspects of love, but she is so supportive and optimistic about literally everything. More often than not, teens and young adults need that sense of support to carry them through life with a smile on their face. Every Wednesday from 8 – 9:40, you bet I am ready to learn about how my actions can make a difference to my team and me and how they play a part in building the fundamentals of my soon too be young-adult hood! :)


jerry “In True Fashion had me puzzled at first. I had not heard those words in a sentence until I was a senior at ECHS, even though I’ve been here all four years. I was so confused as to what In True Fashion was. A lot of my close friends had this class last semester and when I would ask “what was the homework today?” they’d usually exchange glances and when I asked further, they’d say “Jerry doesn’t have the ‘special’ class.” In True Fashion seemed like a privilege, like only special students were allowed inside. I saw people with cameras and fancy clothes and that really interested me. I now understand what it is all about since entering this semester’s class. It’s unique from all the classes that I have in that there is a lesson embedded into everything we do. We have inspirational guest speakers that make you excited to tackle everything life has to offer, like Stephani Victor, who won the Gold Medal in the 2006 Paralymics. Having a guest speaker motivating you is so much more powerful when you see someone who has succeeded using their goals to achieve success, and that credibility is what made Stephani Victor so motivating. In True Fashion, in my opinion, is emphasizing the potential impact we have on the world and giving us the motivation to reach that potential. The fact that we make, design and do market research gives us a context to use that motivation. I don’t think that’s such a bad idea, considering business is where the money is, and money makes the world go round.”


patricia “In True Fashion sounded like this cool secret class that only special students got selected for so that they could meet all of these awesome people and do awesome things. I was pretty much right, except it wasn’t as much of a secret society on my school’s campus as I had imagined it to be. This semester I actually have the privilege of being a part of In True Fashion. So far I have learned not only things about marketing and designing, but things about myself, my dreams and how to manage life, school and everything else. From top notch speakers and a wonderful team of mentors, I’ve been able to take their experiences and knowledge and apply that to my life now and will definitely use it in the future. I’m so excited to design bags in this class for JAMAH and I look forward to the rest of the semester with In True Fashion!”


michael “In True Fashion teaches us how to better manage our money and how to build the foundation of and manage a well-rounded company.”


jessica “In True Fashion gives me the chance to get creative and to learn about the marketing as well as the business of selling a product. Our assignment is to create a JAMAH bag and to create a business and marketing plan around it. I think the most exciting thing about the project is to see our JAMAH bag come to life. I also love being in In True Fashion because money management and financial skills are not my greatest strengths. Having hands on experience really helps me understand economics and so much more.”


welby In True Fashion is a great experience for a student to learn what their comfort place is and how to get out of that place. In True Fashion is helping me to be myself and not to worry what people think and say about me. In In True Fashion we are free to be who we are. Something that I want to accomplish is to see myself in college and to have a great future.”


jaylin “So far, In True Fashion is an interesting program. At first I did not know what to think about it, but when I saw what it offered, I was amazed by what opportunities it presents. A very engaging day for me was the day that Jason Felts, the CEO of the entertainment division of Virgin, came to class. I have always wanted to be in the entertainment industry so his story really inspired me to do my best to reach this goal. I hope to learn more as we progress through the program.”


audrey “I had heard about In True Fashion a couple of times throughout the years at ECHS. I always thought it only had to do with fashion and designing. Also that only certain particular students were selected to participate in this program. I had no idea what to expect or what this program was truly about. So after all, there is so much more to it. I was surprised to learn some of the struggles that the JAMAH and In True Fashion founder Nancy Gale, her associates and my peers have been through. I immediately felt comfort in this program because I am not in this alone. People go through struggles everyday and it is apart of life. The important part of it is we need to keep pushing ourselves to be someone much greater and never give up. In True Fashion has already been such an eye opener on hearing others speak and sharing our different opinions. I am really honored to work with In True Fashion and I am also looking forward to designing a bag; something that I never thought I would do.”


erick “Being my second semester with In True Fashion, I know a little bit more than others about the program. It helps people come out of their comfort zone, makes shy people speak more and helps instill a business mentality. However, while everything seems to be fun and games, there is a very serious objective. In True Fashion is here to help low-income students obtain opportunities they would not normally get. The program shows the value in simply asking for something, as demonstrated by Yvette and Rigo. Not only is the experience simply awesome, the people you meet, the creativity involved with making a bag, and the activities we do all contain a moral lesson.”


“Every now and then opportunities arise; some good, some bad, while others are quite exceptional just like JAMAH and In True Fashion, in which I have been so fortunate of having been a part of it. Each and every Tuesday I am always expecting great things and so far I have not been disappointed. For instance, I knew our bag design was going to be great and so far it has been the best one. All the other groups do not even match our caliber since we have set the bar way too high for them to reach. This may not be the best Student Speak but one thing is for sure that our team will have the best bag!”


“In True Fashion has been an interesting course so far. A couple of weeks ago we got to ride in a limo to visit their factory, which not everyone gets to do. It was interesting seeing how everyone had their own task at their own station. When I walked into the factory I imagined seeing huge machines and lots of people, but to my surprise it was small. It was good seeing that success doesn’t have to be big.”

“ We’re already into week 2 of JAMAH’s In True Fashion and i must say I am very eager to continue experiencing this program :)


“This week we got our prototypes. Actually having the basic form of the bag helped our group a lot. Now, after a few adjustments, we have fallen deeply in love with our bag! I might actually buy it! I’m really looking forward to Tuesdays now because of In True Fashion, it’s just so much fun being with my group! TEAM SOPRO GO!”

“This week in In True Fashion, I had a pleasant surprise. I was jokingly making a deal that I would write 5 student speaks for Dipping Dots, and I couldn’t believe that Nancy actually went and got me ice cream! It was so surprising. I guess business is everywhere, you just have to make the right proposal. Also, we worked on our fundraising. It was fun and productive. We made a lot of bracelets and we already sold 2 before we even started selling! I feel confident our team will win.”

“In True Fashion has been crazy fun! We just went to the Step Up event, supporting Step Up, promoting JAMAH and and getting people to vote for the In True Fashion bags. It was such an exhilarating experience. We talked to so many people and we even got great advice on how to start our own business. I’m so excited for Tuesday’s class!”

“This week, we worked on reaching out to people about the program. We discussed about the program’s strong points and how it affects us. We also had to nervously speak to the camera, calling out people like Ryan Seacrest and Ellen to support our program. Oh! I almost forgot! There was a twist this week. We were put into different groups. It felt weird because I felt like the awesome dynamics of our group SoPro disappeared, so I’m hoping this is a one time thing. It was still a pretty interesting experience though. I was really looking forward to seeing the final product this week. I hope we get to see it soon. Our last class is next week!”

“When I first heard about In True Fashion I couldn’t believe it. It was too good of an opportunity! I’ve been dreaming of designing my own bag and now I get to do it. I just hope I’ll be able to contribute to my team and not disappoint anyone. Eeek! I can’t wait to get started!”


“This is my first student speak. When I got the word that our class was going to be in a fashion program creating bags, my first impression was that the program, In True Fashion, was aimed more at the women than the men, but I soon found out that it’s for both. So far through the activities and learning experiences that I have gone through in the program, I have learned so much about the program and why the program has offered us this opportunity. In True Fashion gives us the opportunity to explore ourselves and gain new skills from teamwork to confidence. This program applies to the real world, working with others you do not often work with or talk to, or even like in general, I like everyone on my team though. Putting forth your own ideas, not just following along or staying tight-lipped, In True Fashion has helped me grow as a person and hopefully will for everyone else.”


“In True Fashion provided us a limo ride not too long ago to their factory where I got somewhat of an inspiration on how to create our bag. However, the previous two weeks have been filled with many setbacks and new designs for the design team. I appreciate the help of the many people who have come to the class to help us. I look forward to designing a bag I can call mine.”

“So far in In True Fashion I have only attended 2 classes and so far I can already see how much this program will affect my life in terms of my major/career. The classroom community is so friendly and determined. I know for a fact we will accomplish something great in just a few weeks.”


“It has been a long time since I got a chance to do a “Student Speak.” But here I am expressing my thoughts about the last two weeks that with In True Fashion. So far, my team, SoPro, is getting a lot done and we seem to be progressing at a faster pace than the other teams. I’m excited to see what our bag will look like next week.”

“To me In True Fashion is not just another project for econ class, but is is an opportunity to learn and acquire skills that will be useful in the future.”


“This year has definitely shown growth within the organizational aspect of the actual In True Fashion program. We have a team of well versed, experienced entrepreneurs and professionals at our disposal. With the students working on their bag projects and fundraising for Network For Teaching Entrepreneurship, the help of these mentors leaves no stone unturned when presenting the students with different angles in the process. The start of every day we meet with Nancy Gale and her generous associates, every young potential entrepreneur is shocked with a bolt of reality; they have the ability to do what society deems improbable. And that is being able to forge a path for themselves that leads deep into the forest of their futures. A path, created with tools that students are being taught to use and acknowledge. One which is the building block of success and that is: Nothing Is Impossible.”

“This year has definitely shown growth within the organizational aspect of the actual In True Fashion Program. We have a team of experienced entrepreneurs and professionals well versed in law at our disposal. With the students working on their bag projects and fund raising for Network For Teacher Entrepreneurship, the help of these mentors leave no stone unturned when presenting the students with different angles in the process. The start of every day we meet with Nancy Gale and her generous associates, every young potential entrepreneur is shocked with a bolt of reality; they have the ability to do what society deems improbable. And that is being able to forge a path for themselves that leads deep into the forest of their futures. A path, created with tools that students are being taught to use and acknowledge. One, which is the building block of success, and that is: Nothing Is Impossible.”


“I cannot wait for the next class! Its so exciting! I really want to have fun designing a bag and learn more about business. I also hope I can become a better spokesperson.”


“I believe In True Fashion is going to be an amazing experience! Not only do I get participate in a program that promotes originality and uniqueness, but a program that works on universal skills such as Patience, Creativity, Communication, and overall Positivity. Skills that i can apply in any career field I choose. In True Fashion is inspiring and I can’t wait to see the impact the program is going to have on us!”

“Surprise is an understatement to describe the surprise my classmates and I received a few weeks ago. Nancy Gale allowed us to visit her factory in style. She transported all of us in limos. Why do you ask? To give us inspiration and insight to what our life could be like. As young entrepeneurs with ambition, drive, motivation, knowledge, heart and fabulous ideas, we are able to utilize what we have to make our dreams come true. After riding in the limo one could only think: why can’t this be my life everyday? Why can’t I go to work in a limo? Why can’t I be my own boss? The answers to these questions is simple, yes it can be us. Nancy is giving us a clean start by challenging and expanding our knowledge. In True Fashion is an amazing program!”


“I have always found economics an interesting subject and now not only do i get to take the class, I also get to learn something firsthand about how the business world works. I am very excited to be working with JAMAH and In True Fashion, I think there is a lot to learn and I think we will have a lot of fun.”


“Excited on all the cool plans we have to do to get the word out on In True Fashion/ECHS voting.”


“I haven’t done a student speak in quite sometime. I am aware that doing this activity goes to my grade, and blaming other homework as the reason why I can’t get this done isn’t a wise argument. I suppose then the real cause is my general laziness and own work, not merely homework just work in general, interfering with what I truly have on my plate.

So, here’s the rundown of what I’ve gained from the past few weeks since my latest student speak. Some several weeks ago, we travelled to the area where the bags are made. Surprisingly, it’s not even a block away from my house; I can walk to the work place right now if I wanted to. Over there, we learned how the bags are made and what the process is, seeing how an independent business that deals with making bags works. Kind of an odd detail, but the place seemed messy, yet the workers and the managers had a method to the madness. I was impressed. At the end, we were given time to develop our bag some more, as the original blueprints were forgotten and could’ve used some reworking anyways.

In all honesty, the limo was nice, I just didn’t think it was overtly awesome. I think that math, english, and all that other stuff is awesome, no offense. I think the mechanics into the difference in engine of the limo piqued me moreso than the limo and the reason why we had the limo in the first place. Really, that’s just me I suppose; fame and money isn’t what I have in mind.

Over the last two weeks, we worked on the bag design and general rule of thumb while ‘on set.’ Interestingly, curse words are allowed, but only if used in a grammatically correct format, though I assume if we do, it will be censored. More importantly than that, we split between marketing and business, and design. On the first day, I worked on helping design the bag. With the help of many of the In True Fashion people, I specifically remember David helping us between both days, we developed of an idea and a theme we wanted to go with our bag. While I worked with the design team, Rudy and Rigo worked together to develop an interesting type of fundraiser: making professional type photos that may be edited to look generally nice or hip and modern.

The next week, we continued the similar pattern, but I took a break from design and helped advance the fundraising idea. More help ensued, and we flushed out the specifics of the planned event. At the end, the final design was drawn; it looks pretty impressive to me.

I have to say, the amount of support we get from ITF is rather impressive. All the people we meet have something important to provide to us as we progress our plans with our bag designs and business plans. Though I feel as though I should feel empowered, I feel more pushed along to complete the task more and more; I’m not resistant to ITF, but I feel more compelled to complete my tasks instead of learning to be a businessman. This is just me feeling how to take this program, as my main goal is not to be a businessperson.”

“Yeah, student speak. I do these about every so often. Anyways, more work on economics and fundraising. I do have to wonder just how big Nancy’s network of people is. On that note, I think we should discuss networking more, if wanted/needed. Just to get this out of the way, I’m not a hustler or anything like that; I make deals when I have to, not when I want to. I don’t mind free ice cream, but unfortunately I’m not a go getter at a business. If I do start a business, it’ll be the side or something. This is still pretty nice however; don’t look a gift horse in the mouth after all. Kinda short, but we’ve had less to discuss as of late.”

“Well, I kind of missed the last time to write anything, so here I am writing. Unfortunately, I was also unable to finish class today because of the meeting with Dartmouth, like many others who attended it. Due to this I kind of missed some of the general interaction with the others students for half the class time period, so it was unfortunate. Yeah. So, just for the record, I think this program is rather interesting; I’m not really a business person, but I found the idea of designing something/selling it to people a fun sentiment to do with friends. About last week, during Back to School Night, some of us, to earn extra credit and/or gain extra credit, sold some leftover stuff from last year’s senior economic plan. I was able to sell only a few toys, while my friends were able to sell multiple clothes; I asked myself, what was the deal with that? I was only able to sell to a few kids and some elderly people, but there were much more middle aged to youth coming in. Most of what we sold was to our own ECHS student body. I found that interesting, and that lead me to today’s discussion of what part of the business could I work on. And, I chose marketing. So yeah, this is my first entry. I hope I didn’t make any mistakes; I don’t feel like correcting them. I have to get off right now, as my mother is having problems with me staying up too late. Hopefully I won’t regret typing the above, but it’s a part of this process.”

“A bit late considering that next class is tomorrow. Anyway, things were hectic in the past week; there were tests, benchmarks, Lip-Off, the heat and a bunch of other things going on to boot. By no means is this my making an excuse; for the most part it’s just me reflecting on that week as a whole. If I recall correctly, last week’s JAMAH focused on meeting some new people part of the JAMAH and In True Fashion group and finally setting us up in our teams. For the most part, I’m happy with my team; they don’t seem like the people who would argue with me indefinitely. Course, that may just me … Please let it not be me that’s troubling? Ah well. So yeah, everything’s pretty cool for the most part.”


“Today we were introduced into the world of communication. The whole class we communicated or talked. I am extremely exited to get to speak my mind and translate my ideas into a project. I am looking forward to seeing the final end product. It’s going to be awesome, but i am a little scared with the whole public speaking thing . . .”


“Excited for this semester with JAMAH!”


“I would love to work with JAMAH because In True Fashion really opened my eyes and made me realize the complexity of business. I like the way JAMAH works at making bags. I think that JAMAH could be a life experience for me. I believe I can learn a lot from my In True Fashion experience and I have much to bring to JAMAH.”

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