Class of 2020: Nijah Slaughter

Nijah Slaughter aims to make a name for herself in the fashion world

By Amber Stark

One piece of mail has set the course for incoming freshman Nijah Slaughter’s future — a future she plans to spend traveling while working in the fashion and apparel industry.

“I chose Bowling Green State University because it was the first school to send me something in the mail and I appreciated that,” said the  international business major. “After visiting, I liked the small-school mentality. It has a big campus, but everybody was so friendly. It seems like everybody wants to get to know you and help you out.”

Slaughter also appreciated BGSU’s proximity to her home in Detroit and said her cousin Brandi Kimbrough ’15, who works at the University, will help keep her from getting homesick.

While at BGSU, Slaughter plans to meet as many new people as possible.

“I am an only child,” she explained. “I want BGSU to push me to meet new people, get out of my comfort zone and network. I am excited for the experience.”

Slaughter will be able to do many of those things as a  President’s Leadership Academy scholar. This four-year leadership development program engages scholars in classes, workshops, experiential learning and community service activities. Slaughter is no stranger to community service, having completed 450 hours in high school.

“I am excited about this opportunity,” she said, sharing her definition of a leader. “It’s doing the right thing when nobody’s watching. I want to be a leader because it will help other people. I want to be a leader who can make a difference without disregarding anyone else.”

Slaughter said PLA experiences and leadership development will benefit her in many ways after graduation. Although she considered a major in  Apparel Merchandising and Product Development, and wants to work in the fashion and apparel industry, she believes an international business degree is more versatile and will give her a different perspective on her chosen industry. That's especially true when combined with a degree from the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising or the Fashion Institute of Technology, plans Slaughter is already making.

This dream started when a 5-year-old Slaughter would dress herself. “The outfits were terrible,” she said. Her grandmother taught her how to sew and now she also does makeup.

“I make a story in my mind about how people’s faces should look with their outfit and then create it,” she said. “As a creative director, I can be the middle person to fashion and apparel. The fashion world never seems to die; the industry is always thriving. I want to work my way up to owning a big corporation that collaborates with different companies.”