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U of O chapter of online mag puts on ‘Catwalk for the Cure’ to raise money for breast cancer research

Photo courtesy of Shaughnessy Photography

The women of the University of Ottawa are taking a fashionable stand against breast cancer.

Saturday, Jan. 25 marks the second annual charity fashion show held by the U of O’s chapter of Her Campus, an online magazine made by and for women on campus. The show will be hosted at the National Arts Centre (NAC) by comedian Jenn Hayward and will feature a cast of Canadian designers, with ticket proceeds going to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation.

Last year, Her Campus hosted its inaugural fashion show called Strut Away Lupus and raised more than $1,500 for lupus research and support.

Building on last year’s success, Her Campus decided to host Catwalk for the Cure at the NAC for this year’s event. The venue will hold a red carpet with photographers, a DJ, goodie bags, and entertainment booths.

Initially started at Harvard University, Her Campus has grown to campus chapters across the globe, including the U of O in 2012.

“Last year, we wanted to do an event to make Her Campus stand out. We were a brand new club, and wanted something that no one had done on campus before,” said Jessica Mastronardi, the magazine’s director of marketing and events and a political science and communications student at the U of O.

She said studying politics and communications has benefited her work with Her Campus.

“If you want to get donors, which has been our challenge, you need to communicate and present yourself well since we are a student organization,” she said.

She learned that most of the HerCampus team at the U of O had worked for Ottawa Fashion Week before, so they wanted to try a fashion show on campus.

Mastronardi said charity starts at home, so she and the team contacted designers based out of Ottawa to help with the event. The lineup includes Bernice & Barclay, Alfred-Marcel, Beach Beauty Essentials, King of Arts Clothing, Babes & Gents, Chobi, and stylist Johanne Albert.

Ryan Malcolm-Campbell, a former University of Ottawa varsity basketball player and founder of the fashion line King of Arts, is also showing a collection at the fashion show.

“I didn’t hesitate for a second and was excited to be a part of my second official fashion show featuring my company,” he said. “I already had plans to release a few pink pieces in the new year and with the theme of this show being charity for breast cancer, I felt it would be a perfect avenue for me to not only support a great cause but also bring awareness to my brand and mission.”

Catwalk for the Cure takes place Jan. 25 at 7 p.m. at the NAC. Tickets are $20 and available online.