This South Sudanese college student is now a top model at Prada, thanks to the internet
Anok Yai decided to attend Howard University’s 2017 homecoming, but little did she know that it would be a life-changing experience. After a photographer snapped her photo, the internet marveled over Yai’s immaculate beauty. Many declared that she needed to be signed by a top modeling agency ASAP. Thanks to social media and a growing fan base, Yai has not only become a sought-after model but also just became the second black model to open the Prada show.
Yahoo Lifestyle caught up with Yai back in October, and she revealed that she moved to the United States in 2000 and actually never modeled before. “I’ve always thought about modeling,” Yai said. “It’s a dream that I’ve wanted for a long time but always pushed to the side because of self-doubt and distractions from school. Now I see this dream as something a lot more obtainable.”
The 20-year-old also shared that she immediately started to receive offers after her photos went viral. However, she was keeping her options open before committing to anyone and confirmed that she wasn’t going to ditch school for a modeling career.
Fast-forward to four months later and Yai has officially signed with Next Models, which has led to amazing gigs such as opening Prada’s Fall/Winter 2018 show. She shared a photo on Instagram from the runway with the caption: “This is something that I’d only dream of.” The rising model also mentioned how she couldn’t believe she was only the second black woman to open for Prada, after Naomi Campbell back in 1997.
PRADA WORLDWIDE EXCLUSIVE. This is something that I’d only dream of. Thank you Ms Prada, Olivier Rizzo @willyvanderperre @ashleybrokaw @kylehagler and the Next team for giving the little girl from Manch a chance. Can’t believe I’m the first black woman to open for Prada since queen @iamnaomicampbell, forever grateful. And thank you to @patmcgrathreal @cheriejohnson56 and @guidopalau they made me look extra chic – PRADA CHIC 😂💋
Fans continue to flood Yai’s post with admirable comments such as “Loving the representation” and “My dear queen do it for black girls you are beautiful.” To say the least, Yai is already making a huge name for herself, and she’s on the right path toward success.
We will keep an eye out to see what other runway shows she slays this season. For now, keep scrolling to see some of her supermodel-in-the-making moments.