Two FIDM Alumni Need Your Votes as Top 20 Finalists in a National Retail Contest Worth up to $25K

Two FIDM Digital Media Students developed videos about FIDM Merchandise Marketing Alumna, Carla Santiago, and FIDM Apparel Industry Management Alumnus, Miguel Urias, that have been selected as two of 20 finalists in a national retail contest– and they need your votes to win up to $25,000.

The “This is Retail” contest, sponsored by the National Retail Federation, is a part of the association’s multi-faceted “Retail Means Jobs” campaign.

Carla and Miguel shared their personal experiences in the retail industry, with the help of H.J. Chong and Bobby Cohen who filmed, edited, and developed the story and motion graphics for the videos while earning their Digital Media degrees from FIDM/Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising.


Starting April 3, you may visit to vote for the videos featuring Carla Santiago and Miguel Urias!

You may vote up to 10 times every day. The first round of voting is April 3 – April 8.

Carla is a buyer at Brighton, and Miguel is the founder of Password Athletics and a Marine who served two tours of duty. The first place winner will receive $25,000, the second place winner will receive $15,000, and the third place winner will receive $10,000.

Click here to vote for Carla Santiago and Miguel Urias’ videos, developed by Bobby Cohen and H.J. Chong, and make sure to check back to see if they continue to be selected as top 10 and top 5 finalists.

Miguel Urias of Password Athletics

FIDM Alumnus, marine and founder of Password Athletics, Miguel Urias, is a finalist in NRF's "This is Retail" Contest

(Above: FIDM Alumnus, Marine and founder of Password Athletics, Miguel Urias, is a finalist in NRF's "This is Retail" Contest)

Click here to vote for Miguel Urias of Password Athletics:

Carla Santiago of Brighton

Brighton buyer and FIDM Alumna, Carla Santiago, is a finalist in NRF's "This is Retail" Contest

(Above: Brighton buyer and FIDM Alumna, Carla Santiago, is a finalist in NRF's "This is Retail" Contest)

Click here to vote for Carla Santiago of Brighton:

Vote for FIDM Alumni in This is Retail Contest

Vote for FIDM Alumni in the NRF's "This is Retail" Contest

The selection process will continue through April as the top 20 videos go head-to-head in a bracket-style tournament, each week being narrowed down to the top 10, five and finally the top three. Beginning April 3, anyone can cast a vote for their favorite videos through NRF’s Retail Means Jobs website, voting up to 10 times a day per matchup. The videos with the most votes before the end of each six-day period will move on to the next round. The contest’s top three finalists will be announced on May 1, and will be flown to NRF’s Washington Leadership Conference for the announcement of the contest rankings on May 16. The first place winner will receive $25,000 with $15,000 for second place and $10,000 for third place.

Prominent retail executives at NRF member companies determined the top 20 finalists, which included:

• Bill Brand, Executive Vice President, Programming, Marketing and Business Development, HSN,
• Jennifer Lassiter, Vice President, Internal Communication, The Neiman Marcus Group,
• Jessica Leseky, Director of Enterprise Sales, Barnes & Noble
• Dave Ratner, Owner, Dave’s Soda and Pet City,
• Jamie T. Richardson, Vice President, Government and Shareholder Relations, White Castle, and
• John Rogers, Vice President/GM, Global e-commerce, Under Armour.

“The incredible stories we heard from small business owners and employees through this contest serve as a reminder that retail is at the heart of every community,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “While each of these finalists has their own story, they collectively demonstrate the opportunities in and power of retail, which supports 42 million U.S. jobs.”

Key dates:

April 9 Top 10 videos announced

April 10 – April 15 Voting on five matchups for the Top 10 videos

April 16 Top 5 videos announced

April 17 – April 22 All five videos compete for voting to win the top prize

May 1 Top three finalists announced

May 16 Ranking of the top three videos announced and prizes awarded in Washington, D.C. at NRF’s Washington Leadership Conference

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Questions/comments? Email the editor, Mani O’Brien at mo’



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Author: Mani O'Brien

Mani O’Brien is the Online Editor for the FIDMDigitalArts Blog and the Social Media Marketing Manager for FIDM/Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising. She earned her bachelor of arts degree in print journalism from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism & Mass Communications at Arizona State University in 2006, and Associate of Arts degree in Graphic Design (Professional Designation) at FIDM in 2010. When she’s not brainstorming social media marketing ideas or writing about the graphic design and digital media, she enjoys practicing yoga, reading magazines, and hanging out with friends and family in Los Angeles.

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