When I took the Industry Exploration Seminar class last semester, I mentioned to my professor during the exit interview that I was not looking forward to the spring 2013 semester, because I would have to do a retail internship. She told me I might change my mind about retail and that it was not the monster I was imagining. I really did NOT believe her! I was mad that this was a requirement, because I didn't have any desire to work in a store.
Well, that definitely changed. I still don't feel that being a sales associate is my dream job, but I do now understand that it is very important to have this type of experience. I enjoyed learning about the different aspects of the retail environment and the internship definitely changed some ideas I had about the fashion industry.
I also survived my Economics and Spreadsheets classes. Whew! They were not as painful or mind-blowing as I expected and gave me a lot of information and useful tips I can apply in my future career. My other creative (Advance Display Graphics) and informative (Applied Concepts of Fashion Merchandising) classes made me see the industry through many different perspectives and I did have fun in them most of the time!
This semester, like all the others, was all about learning and finding things out about myself. I now know there are more activities I enjoy doing and that I am good at and I also know some things that I definitely don't want to do at any point in my professional life. (Unless I had no other choice!)
College is all about discovery, knowledge and going out of your comfort zone. I did that pretty well this semester. LIM College knows how to push you to your limit and make you feel rewarded in the end, one way or another.
I am ready for you!
People often say that in the fashion business the connections you make through work and school can be really helpful in the future, especially if you make a good impression. Well, that is definitely true! Back when I was interning for the fashion stylist Jene Luciani I really gave my best and it has definitely paid off this semester.
When I was looking for a retail internship I wanted one that would be close to where I live and fit my schedule. So I took a chance and asked Jene if she could help me out. As fast as I hit the "send" button on an email to her, she emailed me back with a nice reference and copied me on an email to her friends who owned stores in the area.
In a matter of weeks I was walking into the jewelry store Desires by Mikolay. I interviewed with the owner and left with an internship position in hand. So great! The interview went very smoothly. I was able to talk about my previous experiences with confidence. All the preparation I did at LIM College during my pre-internship class (Industry Exploration Seminar) really came back to me when I needed it most.
I was extremely thankful to have a position in retail even though I was not crazy about the field. So far this experience has been pretty fun. I greet and talk to clients and help the other sales assistants when the store is busy. I deal with inventory and use their internal system. I've also learned things I didn’t even imagine ever doing. For example, cleaning jewelry, which is such a simple process but makes the piece look so much shinier afterwards. (I was able to clean my own pieces too, which was a big plus.) I've also had a chance to do some visual merchandising (my major!) with jewelry and accessories displays. Now I'm excited to see what else this opportunity has in store for me.
What can I do to make everything better? I asked myself that all night after hearing the terrible news about Boston. America is a country full of life, where hard work and freedom are key; a place where people come to create a better life for themselves and also to accomplish and learn things. At least that is why I came here.
It saddens me that there are so many mean people, and when I say mean, I am talking about the worst meaning of the word. They try to destroy the reasons why we work so hard, try to take away the moments of fun. They make us worry about things we shouldn’t.
Should we just live like that? My answer is NO! In Brazil we also have violence. I bet there is no place in the world where all people are genuinely good. But do people have to do absurd things like that to innocent people? Unfortunately, these sad acts don’t only happen here, otherwise it would be much easier to fix, right?
As an immigrant I try every day to belong to a culture that wasn’t always mine. I got to where I am now because I was dedicated and focused. With a “make a better world” goal in mind, we should ALL stick together and try even harder to actually do GOOD to everyone around us. I am going to start by helping someone TODAY, by making someone’s day happier and somehow creating a better world for all the future generations, our children and grandchildren.
What about you? How are you going to do GOOD?
LIM College, as we all know, is a college “where business meets fashion.” Wondering what that really means? It means that our fashion school is totally focused on putting us right there into the business world. Besides all the opportunities that I have had (including many volunteer positions during Fashion Weeks and internships), the most amazing thing is that I feel like I’m experiencing the industry directly through passionate professors who make day-to-day academic studies way more interesting, and definitely more intense!
Professor Robert Conrad is one example. His Retailing course last semester made me view the retail industry from a totally different perspective. Before that, I did not particularly enjoy retail, nor was I interested in this specific side of the fashion - it seemed a little boring. But with his many years of experience as Vice President and buyer for companies such as Limited Brands, Liz Claiborne, Revlon and JC Penney, he showed us the strategy behind the business. He also transmitted his passion for the field throughout the semester. Because of this course I will be able to understand more and look ahead for solutions to problems that I may encounter in my future career.
Another professor that I have this semester who is very passionate on the subjects of business and fashion is Charles Fradella. His background is also very interesting and diverse. He has been with companies such as R&R Menswear, Amerex, Seminole Manufacturing Company, and JC Penney. He is extremely knowledgeable and has seen it all, not only in America but also all over the world. In his Applied Concepts of Fashion Merchandising class, he teaches us to explore different sides of the fashion industry and teaches us important lessons that can be applied to any field.
The truth is that in general, all the LIM College professors I’ve had so far had a lot of experience and never hesitated to share their insights with anyone who was interested in learning. I am just so glad to be able to network with these knowledgeable people. They are an important part of my journey and I will be very thankful to them once I am successful in what I most love, which is working in the fashion industry.
NYC is such an amazing city. You can go anywhere and do anything in a matter of minutes…you just need to think about something and you can have it faster than you thought possible! I fell in love with Manhattan almost 6 years ago and it has been an intense relationship so far! Clubs, live music bars, fashion, museums, restaurants, parks, you name it -- this city has it ALL. As a full-time fashion school student with a retail internship, I don’t always have time to enjoy everything I want to, but I try to incorporate a few of the things I love most about New York in my day to day routine.
A year ago, I found the only exercise routine I can manage to maintain with my crazy fashion school student schedule: a 45- minute indoor spinning class at a place called SOUL CYCLE. It’s a studio with the most inspiring instructors and a soulful community that enjoys life more than anything. There, I celebrated my birthday with my favorite instructor Julie D., who helped me change a very bad habit I had. I finally quit smoking! YAY! Soul Cycle has several studios around town, including one right near LIM College at East 63rd St.
After all that work, I am always SO hungry! NYC has the best places to eat, from the huge and delicious burritos at Chipotle to the healthy choices at Whole Foods. OMG I can’t even chose among so many options! I particularly love sushi - and Haru right in Times Square is one of my favorites. The food and the different people in the area are incredible. After some frozen yogurt at Pinkberry, all I want to do after a long day is walk around Central Park and admire nature combined with the craziness of this city that never sleeps!
In my opinion, "overwhelming" is the most appropriate word to describe college life, especially in New York City. Everything here looks more complicated, but also way more appealing, than it does anywhere else.
OMG the mistakes I have made and embarrassing moments that only I (and some friends that were also involved - haha) know that I have been though. But those moments were all part of this incredible experience and I keep enjoying every moment of it.
The amount of times I ended up at the wrong stop in the subway system is not a joke… Oh, and whoever said it was easy to understand the streets and avenues in New York City was so wrong! It takes a lot of getting lost and asking random people to finally learn your way around town.
On the bright side, New York City brings everything right to your fingertips. Museums, fairs, parks, art galleries; in NYC you can go to places you only dreamed of. I remember overloading my computer with pictures (yes, about ten thousand of them) and spending every dime on tourist attractions (don't judge - LOL) and I didn’t even realize how valuable they would be when I started my college life here.
Starting school was definitely a challenge (an UNDERSTANTEMENT). Between applications and international students’ required documents, I really did not sleep for a good few weeks (still recovering! haha). And because I am an extremely anxious person, to say the least, this period was probably worse that it should have been and I would say to everyone that patience is the number one word when it comes to this whole process!
But seriously, despite the craziness, I am IN LOVE with college and all the opportunities it brings me. LIM College has so many people working with us to help us learn about and experience the fashion industry more and more every day. I got the chance to learn through fun (and some not so fun) projects, through experiential educational activities, fashion volunteer positions, and information sessions that opened my mind to so many different career paths in the fashion industry.
My goal now is to be able to visit yet another country during my college career. And I can't wait to write all about it!
When I registered for my classes last semester I was expecting to learn a lot, since I knew LIM College was a great school. As time went by though, I not only learned an incredible amount, but I also had a lot of fun doing it!
My class schedule was pretty mixed, with business classes and seminars but also some creative classes which, as a Visual Merchandising major, obviously became my favorites! Color & Design and Display Graphics were the classes I most enjoyed in the fall semester. Both of them gave us the ability to explore our creative side in ways applicable to the fashion industry.
In Color & Design I learned about value through the paintings that we analyzed; and how artists use different elements to create different feelings. Doesn’t that sound like something that can be applied anywhere? Seriously, it can! It gives us structure to work with. For example, in the visual merchandising of a store or how the elements can work together on a business card.
Color & Design is a very hands-on class. We learned about symmetry by doing a symmetric project. We also made a collage and a visual binder that will be helpful for any other visual projects in the future. This class also served as base for my other favorite class: Display Graphics. Truth to be told, I had always seen Photoshop and Illustrator as enemies. OMG they seemed so HARD! But the reality is that they are not as difficult as they look. I was even able to make a press kit for a brand I created myself - from the logo to a brochure that promoted the business.
It was so fun to explore all the tools and know that I can now do it in the real fashion world. Those classes gave me a lot to add on my portfolio. They also taught me how to do certain things I didn’t feel comfortable with, but that are extremely important for the industry that I've chosen to be in.
I could describe this fall semester at LIM College in a few words/phrases: HARD WORK, DIFFERENT and totally FUN!!
All of my classes required a lot of involvement. Being able to actively participate in classes is a great thing if you are interested in becoming better, both academically and professionally speaking, which I was! I had hands-on classes, group projects and research papers. In very different ways, each of them made me grow and learn so much about this industry that I am so passionate about.
This semester I was able to visit fashion companies like Bobbi Trim and Adrienne Launer and I took away everything I could from those field trips as I kept dreaming about the day I will be working for companies like these.
I also had the chance to be involved in fashion shows, volunteer experiences in the fashion world, and workshops for my Industry Exploration class. It was fun to see everything so closely and network with people who may eventually hire me.
For the spring semester I have a few plans, as well as an open mind for whatever opportunities I find along the way. I will be doing a retail internship that has to be completed this following semester and with it I hope to change my mind about dealing with and selling to people who are not always interested in purchasing. I have always disliked being on a store floor (other than for shopping!! Ha-ha) and this internship will be a different environment for me! SCARY!
I also have high expectations for the classes I will be taking. I hope they will give even more things to add to my portfolio, and as usual, have even more fun than I did this semester!
Oh...let’s not forget, I am also planning to take a little vacation to Brazil pretty soon!! JEALOUS?
Happy Holidays everyone! See you all in 2013!
Don’t we always hear from our instructors over and over again how internships are very important for our careers? Plus, they are also required in order to graduate, isn’t that correct?
For me, my internship was way more than that! It was exciting, different and SO fun! Jené Luciani, best-selling writer of The Bra Book, gave me the opportunity to be her intern assistant and go to amazing events with her.
My first experience was a party she threw for her Mad Fashion Episode, where Chris March made her a dress from two hundred bras. It aired on the Bravo channel. That was so much fun. I got to meet Chris March and his great crew and I also helped display Jené’s book and her sponsors’ products throughout the venue.
The holidays arrived, and there I was assisting with a segment for Fox 5 TV. So incredible how the backstage of the TV show looked completely different than I had imagined. It was a great learning experience to help her out with the outfits for the segment, but also extremely nerve- wracking going on live television and “modeling” a holiday outfit while she talked about it. OMG I am a shy person for God’s sake! I also “modeled” on a TODAY Show segment and I was a little less freaked out then. Haha.
Between TV segments and taking care of Jené Luciani’s social media pages, I also accompanied her on an interview for her SHAPE magazine column with no less than Adrian Grenier, who is the spokesperson for a Ford-sponsored social program called SHFT. It was an opportunity to learn about interviewing and how to network at an event by being on the media side. It was also an eye-candy experience for us, so no complaints!! lol
I was SPEECHLESS when Jené sent me to an interview all by myself. HOWEVER, I had to find words to speak to the two designers: Austin Scarlet and Elisa Jimenez from Project Runway All Stars season one, and ask them questions about the show and their own businesses. It was an amazing experience. I never thought I could be so comfortable interviewing someone.
Interning with Jené Luciani was really awesome. I learned more about fashion writing, networking, and fashion styling that I could ever have imagined. It was fun and we formed a great friendship. I feel much more prepared now to go to another fashion internship - I can’t wait!
As a constant dreamer, I have always imagined myself running around like crazy backstage at a fashion show as I have seen on TV and in movies. I could not believe it when I actually stepped inside The Waldorf Astoria, a fancy hotel that hosts International Couture Fashion Week. I jumped up and down with happiness and excitement. I was finally doing something related to the industry I am so passionate about! This particular Fashion Week was very important, because it was my first opportunity to watch fashion shows so closely. I even got to sit first row, since volunteers have the advantage of eventually being seat fillers.
This fashion show led me to so many other opportunities. I steamed and accessorized clothes, as well as dressed models (such an adrenaline rush, by the way!) for the Westchester Mall Fashion Shows. I was even able to meet Jill Zarin from the Real Housewives of NYC. (I know, I know...but reality TV is my guilty pleasure, what can I do?!).
My next goal was to work at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week. After sending my modest resume, I was shocked when they emailed me asking to schedule a phone interview. The interview took less than a minute and I was pretty sure I wouldn’t be asked to participate, but I was wrong! Thank goodness!
The fashion show for the designer label Rebecca Taylor… there I was. It was an awesome show with amazing clothes and fancy VIP guests including Zoe Kravitz and Olivia Palermo. I had the opportunity to be “front of the house assistance,” making sure all rows and gifts were organized and correctly placed. I also greeted guests and took them to their assigned seats. It was fun to see how such an important event works and how each detail is so important to its success. This internship experience showed me that I am ready for many more!
As an international student I have also participated in Brooklyn Fashion Week and Miami Fashion Week. I can’t complain about the “beach days” following Miami Fashion Week. That was a great rest after all the craziness and made the trip even more enjoyable.
I can’t wait to write all about my great internship experiences, but I will leave it for my next blog post!