The independent student newspaper at Goucher College

Van Meter Runway: Third Time’s a Charm 


Welcome to the third edition of the series where I find fashionable people on campus and do quick interviews with them to showcase their outfits. In this edition, you can look forward to some outfits for rainy-days and the final days of school. As we get closer to the end of the semester, people have really upped their fashion game, despite the heavy weight of finals. 

Celeste Bawara’s ‘26 outfits always remind me that pink will never go out of style and neither will dresses. Her eye-catching outfit today reminded me of a cherry blossom and brightened up an otherwise cloudy day. 

Photo courtesy of Ben Lieblein

Is there a reason behind the bright colors, florals, and dresses that you are often seen wearing? 

Celeste: I went to a private school for a really long time and I had to wear skirts, they were like these drab navy and khaki skirts. So there was a period when I was really fighting against it. I was having my “not like other girls” phase. Then I bloomed, and I realized oh it is fun to wear dresses and bright colors, it’s good!

Do you think at Goucher you were able to express yourself more?

Celeste: Yes, I think there are definitely a lot of people who dress so interestingly here and I get compliments all the time from people who are wearing absolutely the opposite of what I’m wearing. But they are like “I love that you are going for it” and I love that they are going for it. 

Stella Rose’s ‘26 outfit is almost the complete opposite of Celeste’s. Her grungy, 90’s style is reminiscent of an outfit in the movie “The Craft”. With a black umbrella to match her dark outfit, the rain compliments her outfit well. 

Photo courtesy of Ben Lieblein

Is there any inspiration for your outfit today?

Stella: Generally when I get dressed, my inspiration is kind of girl in the 90s who is secretly a witch. I really like the 80’s and 90’s so that definitely inspires me. When I go to bed I have somewhat of an idea in my mind of what I want to wear and what the vibe is, so it gives me a general idea, but I just wear what feels good.

Have you always been this fashionable, or was it a process?

Stella: I’ve always been into fashion and if you asked my family, they’d say I’d always been fashionable. But I’ve had a couple of awkward phases where I’ve tried to really follow trends. Or on the other end of the spectrum, I’ve tried to dress super contrarian and just wear really weird stuff because I felt weird a lot when I was a teenager. But now I feel like I’ve found my style and what I’m comfortable wearing, I don’t have to pretend to be someone else.

What would be an accessory you could not leave the house without?

Stella: My mom always says that she feels underdressed without earrings, so definitly earrings. These are actually my mom’s, I stole them from her. Also this necklace, I wear both of them every single day. 

The rain seemed to stop for Hope Kamal ‘25, whose green top matched the recently lush flora of the campus. They have lived in multiple different countries besides the U.S., notably Cairo, Egypt, as well as Germany and Switzerland which gives them a more global perspective on fashion.

Photo courtesy of Ben Lieblein

Could you please walk me through your outfit today?

Hope: Today I’m wearing a green scoop-line shirt with a pair of bell-bottom jeans and a pair of Nikes [not pictured] that I thrifted in New York. I put this outfit together because I’ve been trying to wear more green, that’s the color I’m into now. I’ve also been trying to experiment with hems, so I’m trying new clothes with different kinds of hems. The weather is pretty gloomy today so I thought this outfit would be good to brighten up. 

How has living in so many different countries changed or influenced your style? Do you find that you dress differently in different places?

Hope: I think I do dress differently depending on where I am. Something I appreciate about Goucher is that it allows us the space to experiment to extremes with our style. This is not something that you get everywhere, even in America. When I dress at Goucher, I feel I am my best when it comes to inspiration because it feels like I don’t have to worry about how society would affect my outfit. 

Initially, I used to shy away from clothes that represented my culture, so now I’m trying to incorporate more of that with my jewelry. I try to keep my jewelry as a staple and then mix up my outfits.

Samia Abdur-Rahim ‘26 described their unique fashion journey since coming to Goucher. Their detailed flowy skirt is a piece that really fits my taste as well.

Photo courtesy of Ben Lieblein

Could you walk me through the outfit? What kind of decisions did you make to get dressed this morning?

Samia: Starting with the bottoms, this is the main event. They were $12 off of Depop. Then we have my turtleneck, which I got from possibly TJ Maxx when I was 12, and it’s pink. I’m wearing my Converse, not the Chucks, just the regular old Converse.

Does your style change with your mood or do you feel like you have a consistent style?

Samia: When you look at me, yes my style does change. But in my mind, it really does not because I always wear loose clothing or something that has a lot of airflow so that I’m always moving. I just like to have movement. 

What has your fashion journey been like from before college to now?

Samia: I didn’t really have the money to do anything with my fashion in high school, it would really just be what my mom bought for me and what I could do with that because I did not have a job. Once I got into college I was like “Hey, I can buy my own clothes and make my own style”. One of the ways I do that is by buying a bunch of fun skirts. 

Ben '26 (they/them) is an American Studies Major and staff writer at The Quindecim from Beacon, New York. They are a graduate of Beacon High School and are interested in nature, fashion, writing, cooking, and exploring the world.

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