Orlando Dugi, Din., incorporates luxurious fabrics, sumptuous beading and quality accents into his award-winning designs. Just a few months before earning an Associate in Applied Arts in Fashion Design from SFCC, the Arizona native won “Best of Class in Personal Attire” at the prestigious Heard Museum Guild Indian Fair and Market for his piece, “Eagle Huntress Gown.”

While he has won awards from the Heard Museum, the Santa Fe Indian Market, and elsewhere, not to mention showing at Style Fashion Week New York and exhibiting at the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian, nevertheless Dugi was eager to study at SFCC. “What I learned at the college was the production side,” Dugi said. “I first started with my fashion career about seven years ago.

But I only had one focus: everything had to be handmade.”

Despite the recognition of awards, exhibitions and media coverage, it was hard to sustain a business where every piece was one of a kind, he added.

The 39-year-old said going back to school had its challenges. Initially, he was attending school full time and working in a gallery while keeping his fashion business afloat. He knew that he had to make some changes to reach his goal of attaining a degree. He sought out and received scholarships, which enabled him to stop working and focus on his classes and the college’s Spring Fashion Show during his last semester. Despite juggling a full schedule, Dugi (pronounced duh-guy) also served as the Student Government Association vice president. “It taught me a lot about how to work with different people and personalities. I learned about leadership, organization and dealing with money. It was rewarding because now I can take those skills into my life and business,” he said.

Dugi also found his participation in the student Fashion Club to be valuable. He shared some of his expertise in organizing fashion shows and helped raise money for student lodging for the Fashion Program’s Trade Mart Field Trip to New York. The group visited a pleating factory, the last silk flower-making factory, patternmakers and toured behind the scenes of various production facilities. “I’d been to New York before, but this was really exciting,” Dugi said.

As if these commitments weren’t enough, he also served as artist-in-residence at the Institute of American Indian Arts, where he shared his techniques and inspirations with students. Now focused on high-end ready-to-wear, Dugi was recently a finalist at Phoenix Fashion Week. Next he will participate in the Emerging Designer Bootcamp, then Phoenix Fashion Week’s premier showcase at Talking Stick Resort in October, where one designer will walk away with the title of “Couture Designer of the Year” and a $10,000 prize package. See his fashions at



Los Alamos National Security, LLC, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Santa Fe Community College Foundation and SFCC. The PILAS Internship Program (Programa de Internos, Los Alamos) provides internship opportunities for SFCC students with businesses and organizations in the Santa Fe area. Students will gain valuable, employable skills while earning an hourly wage paid by the college, not the business partners. Internships offer students meaningful work experience while developing a skilled workforce.

SFCC students often cite financial challenges as one of the barriers to earning a degree. With a paid internship, learning while on the job is an option for students who may not be able to afford to take advantage of an unpaid internship. Employers will assign students a project and mentor them through to completion, providing the skills and knowledge required to be successful. Students will spend 50 to 80 hours interning with a business and, in addition to getting paid, will earn academic credit.

Student interns can learn practical skills, which may include creating presentations; performing research; designing customer surveys; planning projects and events; designing websites; scheduling social media posts; bookkeeping/accounting; or participating in a technology-based project. The internships connect a student’s program of study with real workplace activities, providing the “spark” that students need to continue their studies to completion.


OR 505-428-1418.


SFCC Foundation’s endowed scholarships transform lives, providing more opportunities for students and supporting their success. The college thanks two SFCC Governing Board Members who recently established endowed scholarships:

  • Established by Mr. and Mrs. George Gamble, Ph.D.: Charles E. Lindblom Memorial Endowed Scholarship. A friend of the Gambles, Mr. Lindblom, was a retired professor of economics from Yale University.
  • Established by Mr. and Mrs. Jack Sullivan, Vice-Chair: Ashlie Nohl Memorial Endowed Nursing Scholarship, in honor of their daughter, who was an emergency room nurse at Presbyterian Hospital in Española.

For information about establishing a scholarship, please contact Foundation Advancement Manager Kelly Smith at 505-428-1175 or