Fashion, friendship and fun were the prognoses at the Wayne State University School of Medicine Office of Alumni Affairs’ first “Trends with Friends” special event, held Thursday at Neiman Marcus in Troy.
More than 150 School of Medicine alumni, faculty, students, family and friends gathered on the iconic department store’s third floor for canapés, cocktails, conversation and catching up before taking their seats for a 40-minute fashion presentation of women’s and men’s spring clothing and accessory trends. Then, guests worked with store stylists to create their own trendy looks.
While the majority of the evening’s models were local modeling professionals, two of the School of Medicine’s own faculty gave the runway a whirl – Darius Mehregan, M.D., the Hermann Pinkus chair of Dermatology and associate professor; and Renee Page, M.D., assistant dean of Clinical Sciences and assistant professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Both rocked the catwalk to friendly hollers of support from the audience. “It was a little bit of a surprise, but it was a lot of fun,” Dr. Mehregan said.
A Neiman Marcus stylist guided him in picking out a fashionably bright navy sport coat, paired with a colorful bowtie, orange pocket scarf and blue suede Gucci loafers. While he revealed it was actually his second time modeling for a good cause, “I don’t make a habit of it,” he said with a laugh.
Current medical students also attended the event, at a discount, thanks to sponsorship from attendees who purchased premium reserved seating.
Nitya Reddy, a Class of 2015 medical student, was among the attendees.
“I think all girls like fashion,” said Reddy, who came with classmate Priya Gulati.
“It’s a good atmosphere to get physicians and alumni and students together,” Gulati said.
This was the first alumni event for Eugeniya Khanukov, M.D., who graduated from a WSU Internal Medicine residency in 1986. She and daughter Elina Zilverberg noted that a fashion show is especially appropriate as more females become physicians – not the case when Khanukov attended school.
“That trend is changing,” she said.
“There are many more women that are doctors now, which is wonderful,” Zilverberg added.
Registered guests were eligible to win three fashion-focused prizes, including two gift cards to Neiman Marcus and a beauty basics class for four, complete with one-on-one make-up tutorials from Neiman Marcus beauty experts.
The event was organized by Alumni Affairs staff and an honorary host committee made up of School of Medicine alumni, medical students and faculty.
“It is through the alignment of the students, with the alumni, that our future stays intact,” said Vice Dean of Medical Education Maryjean Schenk, M.D., M.P.H.
Plus, it’s just fun to talk fashion.
“I think what’s fun about it is it gets to show off our creative side,” she said. “So much of medicine is being creative. I don’t think we acknowledge that enough.”