Bibhudutta Mohapatra – M.S., Human Environment-Business Administration, 1998
Bibhu Mohapatra mentors SCAD students.
Elle Magazine -- December 4, 2012
Seniors at The Savannah College of Art and Design have a whole lot more than winter break to look forward to, now that the school has just announced the designers taking part in its Style Lab mentorship program for this year. Bibhu Mohapatra, Mimi Plange, and Thomas Finney will work with the fashion students, while Richard Lambertson and John Truex will serve as advisers for accessory design. The inclusion of Finney, a SCAD alum, marks the first time a graduate has been a mentor. "Each of the students I met reminded me of my days at FIT. That curious blend of creativity, excitement, and drive is such a common trait in all of them," Mohapatra reflected while discussing what the experience has been like so far. "I've always remembered my early days in India when I was so deprived of information and guidance. All along I craved a mentor figure, and now I always try to support students in any areas they need help. When [SCAD] reached out to me with this opportunity, I accepted in a heartbeat." Mohapatra counts his own mentor not as someone from his school days, but rather the studio director at Halston when he worked there. "It was working under him that I learned valuable lessons about construction, fabrics, and practical things about being in the business." In his role as teacher, Mohapatra is already planning on getting down to business with hopes of leaving the next generation a keen understanding of what it takes to actually make it: "The very valuable lesson of balancing creativity and commerce." The program goes until graduation, and 19 students were chosen to participate (out of about 40 who applied). The mentors and students will meet twice a quarter to work together, but they will communicate via phone, text, or email throughout the process.