Shelby Smith

Blogger for Choose901, non-profit organization dedicated to showing you what makes Memphis awesome. I'm an enthusiast of dance in all genres who enjoys writing creative content involving the arts, lifestyle, and pugs.

Art exhibit displays underwear

What do photographs, umbrellas, a deer made of salt, a rainbow painted flag and five pairs of panties have in common? All were a few of the pieces selected to be showcased in the 30th Annual Juried Art Exhibition. "Being featured in this show is very prestigious. Even from the perspective of the University, it is really good to see that among the students here, there is some really good talent," said Leslie Luebbers, director of the Art Museum at the University of Memphis.

Childhood Bullying Affects Adult Confidence

When looking back on her years in middle school, University of Memphis sophomore Emma Wilhite remembers how proud she was of performing. She received the “Most Talented” award for her singing. She recalls that her favorite classes were always choir and English. But she was a heavyset young woman. And that has left her with searing memories. She recalls how cruelly she was treated by bullies in her social circle. “Most of my bullies were guys,” Wilhite said. “I was overweight in their eyes, and

Local Ministry Combats Inner-City Delinquency

Jay Beene was distributing two busloads of bread at a local church one day in 2007 when a young boy approached him. Keith Paylor, then 14, asked to help. Within weeks, Paylor was taken under Beene’s wing and into his home. Thus was the beginning of the Shine in the Dark Commission, a nonprofit charitable ministry dedicated to combating the inner-city juvenile delinquency of teenage boys through mentorships. Since 2005, over 100 boys and young men have been involved with Shine in the Dark.

Kitchen Community Brings 100 Learning Gardens to Shelby County Schools

With a mission to create “Community Through Food,” and a CEO, Kimbal Musk, who has culinary and philanthropic passions, Kitchen Community has established 204 learning gardens throughout the U.S. since 2011. Memphis will soon be home to 100 new community gardens. With an investment of nearly $4 million from Kitchen Community and local philanthropists and organizations, Musk’s nonprofit will spearhead the creation of these new gardens by 2016. Darin DeLay has lead many of the projects.

Memphian to Meet: Andrea Everett

With a three-year anniversary of the online, women’s clothing shop, A Thrifty Steal under her up-cycled belt, Andrea Everett, senior Fashion Merchandising major at the University of Memphis, continues to gain recognition for her vintage finds. A Thrifty Steal made its debut in October of 2011 after Everett had a change of heart towards her studies. After two semesters of studying to be a pharmacist, she decided to switch things up a bit. “I had to reevaluate what I wanted to do with my life,” Everett said.

Opportunities abundant for aspiring fashionistas in Memphis

Before you think you have to move far away, take a look at what's already around you. The Memphis fashion scene is becoming an ideal location to jumpstart a career in fashion. "I feel the Memphis fashion scene is growing and has a lot of potential, otherwise I would not be doing what I do," said Charlisha Renata, CEO of Memphis Fashion Group, a local fashion business development firm that is focused on increasing awareness of the fashion industry in the Mid-South and helping professionals launch and maintain their careers.

Additional course fees; $25 per hour added to education courses

For many students, changes in tuition and course fees have put a big hole in their wallet and a damper on their semester. Education majors have been issued an additional 25 dollar course fee, per credit hour, that has been made effective this fall. “My advisor never gave me any notice or information about the new fee, and I wasn’t informed about it until July 27th through an email, after I had already registered for all of my education courses,” said Rachel King, junior, All Learners Education major.

Marker to recognize first black students

In 1959, the Memphis State Eight, stepped onto campus as the first African Americans to attend the University of Memphis. Fast forward to 2012, 42 percent of the campus is African American and a historical marker for the group is set to be unveiled. “Growing up, I’ve always known that I was going to the University of Memphis. I’ve never even thought about any other colleges in my scholastic career, and the Memphis State Eight is why,” said Meca Hill, business and economics major.

Nonprofit label fights debt, works with student bands

What started out as a small T-shirt franchise to combat expensive mall prices in 1999 has slowly evolved into Smith7, a charitable record label that sponsors local music and donates to families and friends in need. "We started making shirts that were cheaper and wanted to put the money towards investing in our friend's business ideas, but soon realized we did not have enough money to do that," said 35-year-old Brian Vernon, Smith7 founder and lead singer in the punk-rock band Wicker.