Multiplying Good, a national nonprofit organization focused on elevating public service as the means to empower individuals, has honored Marymount University’s Fashion Design & Merchandising program with its “One in a Million” Award.
The awards campaign seeks to celebrate individuals, companies, programs and organizations whose acts of bravery, generosity and kindness are bringing our nation together during this time and inspire others to do the same. The team of Marymount students and professors were nominated for their work in creating and supplying protective fashion masks to the Arlington Free Clinic in May.
“They are among the millions of people who are putting others first and using service as a solution to the problems we’re facing,” the nonprofit said in an online announcement last week.
On May 4, Professor William Allen delivered about 120 protective fashion masks to the Clinic, which distributed them to patients, volunteers, staff and visitors for use. The masks were made of breathable cotton and were washable and reversible, and contained a nonwoven polypropylene filter inside. After intensive research, Allen described the masks to be about as protective as surgical masks, which have an 89 percent protective barrier against bacteria and small particles.
The colorful masks were put to use quickly at the Arlington Free Clinic, which provides free, high-quality health care to low-income, uninsured Arlington County adults through the generosity of donors and volunteers.
“It was a whole team effort, and it symbolizes how Marymount is such a mission-driven University,” Allen said, crediting Marymount President Dr. Irma Becerra for facilitating the connection between the two organizations. “With all that has been going on, we felt like we had to do something to help. This initiative proved to be a great opportunity for us to combine creativity with real-world, functional PPE that is needed by so many.”
Marymount faculty members that teamed up for this initiative included Allen, Robin Wagner, Julia Ravindran and Latisha Winston. Students that contributed their time and design skills to create the donated masks included Paris Alexander, Angie Gamarra Becerra, Elfaz Biratu, Deonae Carter-Beale, Alexandra Cohen, Kallie Collett, Mina Hamodah, A’nnah Howard, Erin Pruitt, Caylee Shelton and Emily Vasquez.
Multiplying Good is accepting nominations through August 31 for those who are giving back at every level.