N.C. A&T Alumna Creates HBCU Legacy Fashion Brand

By East L Dockery / 09/07/2023 Alumni

EAST GREENSBORO, N.C. (Sept. 7, 2023) – North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University alumna Cheylaina Fultz ’08 has sewn her legacy in the HBCU fashion industry with her brand, HBCU Legacy Fashion.

HBCU Legacy Fashion specializes in trendsetting clothing for children of proud historically Black college and university graduates. This brand aims to build awareness and pride, as well as spark interest in obtaining higher education from an HBCU. 

Fultz, a mother of three, created this brand because of her love for children, fashion, HBCUs and giving back.

The idea for HBCU Legacy Fashion originated in 2019 as a fashionable clothing line for kids – and after Fultz misplaced the licensing application for the business.

“I went looking for the application and could not find it,” Fultz said. “At the time I had a 3-year-old and a 1-and-a-half-year-old and they had been playing in my office. When I ran into my office all my papers were on the floor, but on top of the stack they made was the licensing application I needed for this business.”

Fast forward to today, and Fultz has created a brand where she can stylishly bring awareness to HBCUs and help fund the education of future HBCU graduates.

“One thing we really want to stand for is being able to connect the youth to their parents’ HBCU,” Fultz said. “We held our first virtual vending for (A&T’s) homecoming in 2021 and in 2022 we held one in person. This year, we plan to do the same and expand out to a few other homecomings like Howard and Spell-House (Spelman-Morehouse).”

HBCU Legacy Fashion creates apparel inspired by A&T, as well as Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University, Fayetteville State University, Hampton University, Howard University, Morehouse College, North Carolina Central University, Norfolk State University, Spelman College and Tuskegee University.

The brand’s apparel includes jackets, crop top hoodies, sweatshirts, t-shirts and other unique items for adults and children.

“I wanted to bring something fresh to this market,” Fultz said. “Usually you see heat-press t-shirts and stuff that’s going to fade. I wanted classic clothing that was going to last for a while.”

HBCU Legacy Fashion clothing is designed with longevity in mind so that each piece can become an heirloom for future generations to honor their family’s HBCU legacy.

“You can even keep it in your family and pass it down, like with our denim jacket,” said Fultz. “A denim jacket is always a classic.”

Fultz travels to grade schools and career fairs to promote her brand and educate children about HBCUs. She continues this work through the HBCU Legacy Fashion newsletter, which is designed to help parents educate their children on what a HBCU is.

“Everyone on our mailing list gets fun facts to chat with their kids about,” she said. “So, we’re not just selling in our newsletter, we’re also providing valuable information. We also have downloadable word search puzzles with different HBCUs on them so that kids can complete them.”

As part of her commitment to supporting HBCUs, Fultz offers internship opportunities to HBCU students who are looking for media and fashion experience.

Fultz received her B.S. in journalism and mass communication from A&T. She credits the confidence instilled in her as a student for her success. Former journalism and mass communications professor Gail Wiggins consistently told her to be proud of her name and to never let anyone shorten or mispronounce it.

“That’s one that N.C. A&T will instill into you is confidence in your culture, your name, your background, and where you’re from,” said Fultz. “That’s one of the biggest things that you do have to have as a business owner. You’re going to have to be confident when you walk into a room with people who may have been doing this longer than you have or if you have to pitch your business or if you’re trying to get funding for your business. A&T definitely gave me the confidence that I needed.”

HBCU Legacy Fashion has grown since its creation in May 2020, with brand apparel available for purchase in 36 Belk stores across the United States and online through Amazon Prime.

For more information, visit hbculegacyfashion.com.

Media Contact Information: eldockery@ncat.edu

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