SOAS University of London

SOAS student wins Vogue Business talent competition

23 February 2021

The editor of the SOAS Spirit, Maliha Shoaib, has won a prestigious Vogue Business talent competition to secure a placement at Vogue Business and a year’s mentorship from the Vogue Business Trend Editor.

The competition aims to amplify new voices in the world of fashion and beauty business journalism. Speaking to Glasgow Live, Maliha - who is in her final year studying for a BA in English and World Philosophies - said she believes there are still issues with access for people of colour to make a career in journalism: "Studies show that diverse newsrooms outperform their non-diverse competitors because what they publish is more well-rounded. It's important that we think critically about the unconscious biases behind the information we take in."

Maliha Shoaib

Photo credit: Glasgow Live

Maliha also spoke on the issue of decolonsing the media industry at the SOAS Festival of Ideas opening plenary and joined a panel alongside SOAS Director Professor Adam Habib at the start of the academic year.

Her winning article on why luxury beauty brands are slow to make inclusive products will be published by Vogue Business. Lucy Maguire, Vogue Business Trend Editor, said: “We received many applications for the Vogue Business Talent competition from people all over the UK. What made Maliha's piece stand out was her unique take on diversity in the luxury beauty industry, a topic the judges felt was very pertinent. The final result was unanimous among our expert judging panel and we are thrilled to have Maliha as our winner.

“We hope that initiatives like this will help those from underrepresented backgrounds break into this industry and we are thrilled to work with Maliha and the runners up as they progress in their careers.“

The judging panel included Harris Reed, the fashion designer who designed Harry Styles’ latest Vogue cover outfit, Condé Nast global chief diversity and inclusion officer Yashica Olden, TED speaker Sinéad Burke and Phoebe English, a fashion designer who recently exhibited at the V&A.