Seattle Models Guild scam targeting UW students

Recently, individuals claiming to be affiliated with Seattle Models Guild (SMG) have been emailing UW students inviting them be ‘paid interns’ (sample email communication below my signature).  This is a scam.  These individuals are not in fact affiliated with Seattle Models Guild (SMG), which is a legitimate modeling agency in the Seattle area.   They may also reference the UW Career Center in the communications, as either having provided the student information, or possessing more information on this ‘opportunity’ – this is not the case.

UW is in communication with the UWPD as of early last week, and an Officer there is gathering information and determining the best course of action.  In the interim, pending any more formal recommendations from the UWPD, we ask that you:

  • ·         Share this information with your students, as you are willing and able.
  • ·         Tell students not to respond to these requests if they receive them.
  • ·         Encourage any students who have been contacted and responded to cease communications with these individuals immediately, and forward any email threads to me at so I can share them with UWPD.
  • ·         Tell students not to respond to requests from these individuals to share additional photographs, share personal information like home address, or to meet in person.

The President of SMG Models is aware of this scam, which is also being perpetrated elsewhere in the greater Puget Sound, and has been communicating with the Seattle Police department.

If there is anything further that the UWPD recommends our students do or be aware of, I will be sure to share it with you directly.  If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to be in touch.  Thank you!

 Jeff Williams <> wrote:

Hello Husky!

We have recently been working with a handful of UW students on an internship with our company SMG. We requested a record of the students in good scholarship at the University to narrow down our selection. We’re pleased to offer you this position as one of our paid interns. 

We are working with the University of Washington on offering a select amount of students an internship. We at SMG understand that it is difficult to pay for college sometimes or sometimes you might not know what to do with the extra time on your hands. So we decided to create an internship that wouldn’t take too long each month. We have contracts set up with different companies nationwide that we work with in market advertising. We have other models that we use for fashion design but we have very few that actually help out with campaigning/advertising. 

You’re part in this internship would be to find your own creative side. We challenge you each month to be creative with the pictures you take. We will then use some of these pictures in different magazines showcasing the “University Style.” Each month we’ll require you to take about 35 photos. It should never take more than 1 hour time each month. You will get a stipend check as well as you will be able to keep the clothing items we send you to model.

There are a few forms you will need to fill out but we require you finish the first months offer. This is just so that we know you are actually serious about the position and are not just here to waste our time. The forms entail nothing to serious just general things like your name and address. There is one that states a few rules such as if we send you an article of clothing or shoes you must submit your 35 photos that month on time. If not we ask you to send the things back. We pay for all shipping. If you do complete your set of photos though you’ll get to keep whatever we send you.

Lastly to cover contracts, since you’re not actually becoming a model there will be no contracts. You can leave us at anytime. No hard feelings. We know circumstances change but we always want to keep on a good page with all of our interns and we are happy to write you recommendation letters or answer any questions you may have about a certain department or if you just have any general questions. 

We look forward to working with you, if you have any question please let us know.

Jessica Peterson
Chief Editor
SMG Models
1264 Eastlake Ave E, Seattle, WA 98102

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