Meet Tuskegee University Student Jobe Kelly — Founder of ILLUMINATE
Jobe Kelly, New Orleans native and one of Tuskegee University’s very own Golden Tigers shares a common interest with many other college students—fashion. So when Kelly, 19, noticed that many of the labels us students crave tend to drain our bank accounts, he wanted to change the game. Thus, ILLUMINATE was born, a brand crafted to “make others feel like they stand out, they matter, and that they shine bright”, all while keeping fashion and affordability at the forefront.
Focused on creating content with character, Kelly advises that young people looking to start their own business remain passionate for what they are pursuing. “Don’t base your business strictly off of making the money”, says the budding business owner, “follow your heart first, and the money will come after”.
Although he has made it look easy, he was quick to acknowledge the beauty in the struggle of balancing business and staying in the books. He goes on to say that “the grind and the hustle of becoming an entrepreneur [makes] the success that much sweeter”, so he does what he has to do by staying on top of his grades in order to maintain his business.
Kelly describes his own brand with the words “fresh, bright, and exciting”, and for good reason! ILLUMINATE has been making waves across the Tuskegee campus, and he hopes to expand to storefronts in the surrounding community as well as in his hometown of New Orleans, Louisiana. The brand is currently specializing in baseball caps emblazoned with the company logo, as photographed.
If you’re interested in grabbing something from the collection, be sure to check him out on twitter @ILLUMINATEthe and on instagram @illuminatethebrand!