Northwestern graduate wins $25,000 in national scholarship competition
LIM College senior and 2015 Northwestern Lehigh High School graduate Kelsey White has been selected as the 2019 winner of the National Retail Federation Foundation’s Next Generation Scholarship competition.
Her award was announced Jan. 13 during the annual NRF Foundation Gala in Manhattan.
White is the first LIM College student to receive this prestigious national honor.
The NRF Foundation Next Generation Scholarship is the pinnacle achievement for students at the 75 NRF University Member schools, who are currently pursuing retail careers or majors relevant to retail.
This opportunity was created for students who have demonstrated leadership skills, previous retail experience and a passionate interest in making an impact in the retail industry.
The 2019 Next Generation scholarship application process consisted of three phases.
In the first phase, 103 applicants from 41 colleges and universities submitted an essay, personal brand video, letters of recommendation, resume, and academic transcripts.
A panel of retail executives from 17 companies judged those materials to select 25 semifinalists.
Semifinalists completed a case study created in partnership with BJ’s Wholesale Club and interviewed with an assigned retailer.
The case study focused on the digital investments BJ’s Wholesale Club had made in the past 12 months.
Students researched the company, conducted a competitive analysis and made recommendations for the future.
The second panel of retail experts used the semifinalists’ case studies and interviews to select five finalists to advance to the final round, where they were interviewed to determine the top recipient.
White is part of LIM College’s Fashion Scholars honors program.
She has completed internships at BCBG, Showroom Delfina, Carolina Herrera, and Haddad Brands, and currently works part-time as a buying assistant at Chanel.
Her ultimate career goal is to lead a luxury brand.
In addition to White, LIM College students Jessie Karagosian and Tori Sandness were named as semifinalists in this year’s competition.
Professor Marla Greene advised and supported the three throughout the NRF scholarship program process.
White, Karagosian, and Sandness all attended the NRF Student Program and Gala during the 2019 NRF Big Show, participating in mentoring sessions and networking with retail company executives.