With that single photo, she gained thousands of followers, with dozens of modelling companies wanting to sign her.
There is no denying that social media has shed light on many things we never knew, and people we never knew existed. Though lives have been destroyed after being publicly shamed on social media, it is undeniable that social media has helped many others by connecting them. People looking for family have found theirs through the help of social media, while there are people who gained unbelievable fame on social media—ultimately reaching their dreams in life. One woman whose life was completely changed was Sudanese college student Anok Yai.
Anok Yai, who was born in Egypt, moved to the US when she was two years old and grew up in the city of Manchester, in New Hampshire. She then started studying biochemistry at Plymouth State University, with a view to eventually becoming a doctor.
But she never knew her life would take a life-changing turn when her friend invited her to the homecoming festival at Howard University in Washington, D.C, called Yard Fest. Later that day, she bumped into Steve Hall, who was taking pictures for his fashion website The SUNK. Steve Hall was stunned by her beautiful skin, her tall figure, and her face that fits to be a model. He took one photo and shared it on Instagram.
Steve Hall wasn’t surprised when thousands of other users reacted to the photo, praising Anok for her rare beauty. Meanwhile, Anok woke up to a sudden surge of followers on her own Instagram, from 300 to over 50,000 in just a few days.
She said: “When (the Instagram snap) got to a couple thousand and it just kept going higher and higher, I was surprised.
“And I was happy. I always wanted it to happen, but it was something I never expected.
“I got an email from a modelling agency.
“They said they were interested in having me and they had me call them. And they just set up tons of interviews and it just went on from there.”
While many modelling companies hoped to sign her up, a global modelling agency called Next Models was the only successful team to make her say yes. The agency is known for working with celebrities such as Lana Del Rey and Rita Ora.