Intern Spotlight: Sarah Morrison


 

Tell me a little bit about yourself and your experience.

SM: I am a current senior at Elon University, preparing to graduate this May! Right now, I am interning for Esquire Magazine in NYC within the Fashion Editorial department. I will return to Elon when my internship wraps up next month. I’ve had internships all over the board during my college career, however my internship with Esquire is my first position in the fashion industry! In addition, I am a Brand Ambassador for The Next Step Realty in NYC, a Chapter Advisor for Boston-based, Her Campus magazine, and write for my own Her Campus chapter at Elon.

 

Where have you interned to date?

SM: My most recent internships include my current internship at Esquire Magazine as well as my internship with the U.S. Fund for UNICEF last summer. I have also held part-time internship positions at OhioHealth and Prime Social Group, both based in my hometown, Columbus, Ohio.

 

That is quite a variety of experience! What’s been your favorite internship so far? Where do you see yourself headed?

SM: My favorite internship so far has undoubtedly been my current internship at Esquire Magazine. I think I had always envisioned myself in fashion, however, I never thought I would have an opportunity to explore the industry this early in my career. So far, I love the editorial side of things, however, I’m not opposed to exploring other areas like publishing, PR, etc. Overall, I definitely see myself in a creative field in one way or another!

 

Her Campus is one of our favorite resources for college students! What kind of content do you write for them? Has offering other college students advice helped you grow as one yourself?

SM: Her Campus has truly been one of the greatest stepping stones for my professional career! I’ve been writing for the Her Campus Elon chapter for two years and counting. I tend to pick up stories relating to fashion and beauty. I’m also a Senior Copy Editor for Her Campus Elon, and a Chapter Advisor for the larger Her Campus magazine out of Boston. My Chapter Advisor role in particular has provided me with the opportunity to simultaneously develop my editorial and business skills. I highly recommend others to get involved!

 

Why do you intern?

SM: I intern because I am eager to learn as much as I can not only about a given industry/company, but also about my own capabilities, and capacity for professional growth. Internships allow me to absorb a tremendous amount of working knowledge from a wide range of entry points. Whether you’re learning from established employees, fellow interns, clients, or intuitively on your own, there is always something to be gained from internships.

 

What would you say is the most valuable thing you’ve learned through all of your experience?

SM: I’ve learned that there is not always going to be a clear-cut path for completing a task or project. In fashion, there is always something that needs to be done. Many times, there can be a multitude of tasks thrown at you, in which you must quickly decide how you’re going to prioritize. And sometimes, it takes a little creativity or hard research to efficiently complete a tricky assignment. I can’t stress “efficiency” enough; it’s perhaps one of, if not the most important concept when it comes to achievement in any workplace. Also, organization and an eye for detail is key in almost every role, particularly one in the fashion industry.

 

What do you feel is the key to “efficiency?”

SM: Personally, I believe that the key to efficiency is organization. I’m not saying you have to be OCD, however, strong organizational habits should be a priority. Also, I recommend keeping your eyes and ears open in the office – you can learn so much by (appropriately) tuning-in on the interactions around you!

 

Do you have a specific system to keep yourself organized?

SM: The first thing I do in the morning is check my email. I respond to messages as needed and quickly address any urgent requests. The beginning of the workday also calls for going over both daily and long-term to-do lists. Each day, I create new daily to-do lists, rank by priority, and periodically work on long-term to-do lists as well. I’m also a big fan of “flagging” important emails to review at the end of each workday.

 

How would you advise someone to push themselves? Self-motivation can be tricky business.

SM: Personally, I always prefer to adopt a goal-oriented mindset when it comes to succeeding in the workplace. Visualizing a final project while in the process of piecing it together really helps motivate me to finish what I started. In terms of motivation in the job-seeking process, I always try to think of the long-term benefits of internships and overall try to remain optimistic.

 

What’s been your favorite internship and why?

SM: My favorite internship thus far is definitely my current internship with Esquire Magazine in the Fashion Editorial department. The fast-paced nature of the department guarantees that there is always something to do. As an intern in particular, it’s refreshing to have hands-on work and responsibility everyday. Working fashion shoots is another plus; the surprises here and there continue to keep me on my toes!

 

Who are some of the mentors who have inspired you?

SM: I’m greatly inspired by my fellow interns–both past and present. Working with my peers has allowed me to more efficiently transition into an intern role, establish essential professional and personal relationships, and more. Working in tandem with my peers has also allowed me to pick up on their strengths, and thus strive to improve my own areas of weakness.

 

Have you kept in touch with your fellow interns?

SM: I have! Although distance makes it difficult at times, it’s nice to have the convenience of both professional networks (like LinkedIn) and social media networks to stay in touch! The great thing about keeping in touch with fellow interns is that they love Instagram and Snapchat as much as I do!

 

How do you balance a friendship and a professional relationship with your fellow interns? Do you have any limits?

SM: I’ve come a long way in terms of balancing friendship and professionalism around my fellow interns. My first internship was in event-planning, so I was mostly on my feet working fun sponsored events with my fellow interns. This particular setting allowed me to develop solid professional communication habits from the get-go. Whether you’re in a traditional office environment or not, it’s important to follow the observed rules for professional relationships with both your peers and seniors.  I enjoy engaging in small talk, light conversation, however, I try to leave inside jokes, relationship drama, personal opinions etc. outside of the office. At this juncture, I would say that I’m pretty seasoned in terms of balancing friendship and professionalism with fellow interns!

 

 

Do you have any advice for writing a cover letter?

SM: Firstly, I would encourage the writer to incorporate personality throughout the cover letter, without sacrificing professionalism of course. Personally, I always start with a “sales pitch” of sorts that concisely combines my knowledge of the given company and a distinguishing professional skill/quality that I feel would lure in the reader. While tailoring the cover letter to a given company, I then concisely state relevant professional experience and what I can bring to the company.

 

What about for resumes, since it is very important part of your application and is always up for debate by means of presentation?

SM: I try to keep my resume as concise as possible, however, I don’t abide by any rules when it comes to length. I do organize my resume with header first (name, contact info, professional objective and skill set), followed by professional experience (beginning with the most recent), education, and awards/recognition. I tailor all of this information depending on the job application.

 

What’s your interview prep process? Any tricks to combat nerves?

SM: Practice, practice, practice! I always make sure that I am prepared for all sorts of questions to be thrown my way. I am very big on research, so I love Google-ing typical job interview questions as well as company-specific interview questions (Glassdoor.com is a life-saver!). In addition, I recommend memorizing your own resume, especially any highlights from your previous positions.

 

What are three words you would use to describe a rockstar intern?

SM: Sharp (as in mentally-sharp!), positive, and personable!

 

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

SM: “More than anything else, we need to be efficient”

 

What’s the best piece of advice you could give to fellow interns?

SM: “If you have to cry, go outside” -Kelly Cutrone

 

Congrats on landing an internship at Esquire Magazine through our Intern Look book! How did they reach out to you?

SM: Esquire contacted me via email last November, and then arranged a phone interview a few days later. Honestly, I think I’m still on cloud 9!

 

What’s your favorite part of Free Fashion Internships?

SM: I love the internship search function! It’s both easy and exciting to keep tabs on new internship postings from a multitude of fabulous fashion brands and magazines!

 

What’s next for you?

SM: Upon graduation, I hope to land an entry-level position this fall in NYC. I definitely see myself continuing to work in fashion, so hopefully it’s in the cards for me! I’m very eager to permanently return to the city that has opened my eyes to this unique industry.

 

Closing thoughts?

SM: Don’t be the girl who didn’t go to Paris! ;)

 

 

 

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Intern Spotlight: Arielle Schrader

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Tell me a little bit about yourself and your experience.

AS: I’m a PR gal and creative who is passionate about fashion, leadership, and relationships. Originally from a small town in Mississippi, I knew I needed to be in a city that could provide me with ample opportunities in the public relations industry. Since I moved to Nashville three years ago, I have participated in six amazing internships, while holding positions as a Campus Tour Guide, an officer of Belmont PRSSA and an officer and sister of Alpha Gamma Delta.

 

Where have you interned to date?

AS: Two Nashville-based public relations firms, the Country Music Association, Nashville Fashion Week, the Office of New Student and Parent Programs at my university and Educational Services of America, a provider of alternative and special education schools and programs.

 

Why do you intern?

AS: To find my passion. I have always been very ambitious towards my career path, so my sophomore year I participated in my first internship simply to start early and get ahead of my peers. After that first internship, I realized internships are actually a great way to learn more about what you do and do not want to do, while also gaining valuable experience and making connections. Thus, I began interning in a wide range of industries with the purpose of discovering where my greatest passion lay.

 

What would you say is the most valuable thing you’ve learned through all of your experience?

AS: There is always room for improvement. You may land amazing internships and be praised for impressive work, but no matter how big your accomplishments are, you should be seeking challenges that push you to work harder and learn more. Don’t ever let yourself get comfortable.

 

How would you advise someone to push themselves? Self-motivation can be tricky business.

AS: Self-motivation is most successful when it is driven by another factor. For example, one of the things I value most is excellence – always striving to become the best I can be. This value motivates me to seek out challenges and growth opportunities. I would advise others to think about their values and passions. Then, evaluate how they can use that value or passion to motivate them. Find what motivates you!

 

What’s been your favorite internship and why?

AS: Oh goodness, this is a tough one. Each of my internships have been such valuable learning experiences there is no way I could choose just one favorite. I can say I really enjoyed interning full-time with the Educational Services of America this summer. I was allowed to take on a lot of responsibility, especially with large projects. I was given creative freedom and room to experiment and explore. I felt more like an employee than an intern.

 

Would you say the discrepancy between working as a full-time intern and a part-time intern is clear? Is one more beneficial than the other?

AS: There is definitely a difference between the two, but part-time and full-time internships are beneficial in different ways. Part-time internships are a convenient way to gain great experience while you are taking classes during the school semester. Full-time internships provide an opportunity to be fully engaged in an internship. When you are in the office everyday, you form better relationships with supervisors, have more responsibility and learn how to manage your time outside of work. Full-time internships are experiences every student should try to have on their resume!

 

Who are some of the mentors who have inspired you?

AS: My supervisor on the Orientation Council has been a huge inspiration. He always expected the best from us and never settled for anything but our best work. Ever since, I never let myself do anything less than my best. He also challenged us to “live beyond reproach.” Ethically, PR professionals, as well as other professionals, can find themselves in sticky situations and be tempted to do act unethically to get ahead. As young professionals, it is very important to remember that our actions represent our character.

 

Do you have any advice for writing a cover letter?

AS: A cover letter doubles as a writing sample, so give as much attention as a school or work assignment. When you are applying for several internships, it is easy to get lazy and just copy and paste each letter or just send one paragraph in the body of an email. When you do this, you are losing a great opportunity to display your communication skills. Make sure each cover letter is exactly that, a letter personalized to the company stating why you feel you are the best fit.

 

What about for resumes, since it is very important part of your application and is always up for debate by means of presentation?

AS: Tailor your resume to the internship you are seeking. You should include only relevant experience and skills based on what they expect from an intern. This method is extremely helpful when you have enough experience to cover almost three pages, like I do. Open the internship description and requirements, then highlight the specific experience and skills you have that directly line up with what the company is seeking from an intern. Just like a cover letter, you should never use the same resume for every internship application.

 

As 1 of 10 orientation council members at Belmont University, you interviewed 325 applicants. That’s a lot! Did you see any common mistakes interviewees made?

AS: It was tough! Anytime I was not in class, I was interviewing someone. The most common mistake we noticed was the lack of genuine answers. I heard a lot of cookie-cutter answers, things the applicants thought I wanted to hear. When you interview for any job, it is so important to be yourself because employers can tell when you are not being authentic.

 

What’s the most common cookie-cutter answer you’ve heard, and how would you advise someone to answer differently?

AS: “I’m a hard worker.” With this type of answer, the interviewer does not learn how you are any different from the last person they interviewed. If you really are a hard worker, answer the question with an example or change the language of your answer. For example, “I work harder than other people. In college, I always took five classes and had an internship while keeping a great GPA,” or “I am someone who takes initiative during difficult projects and only stops working when the project is complete.” Your responses should give the interviewer a good sense of who you are and what you are about. Answer questions in a way that authentically represents you!

 

You seem to be super busy on campus with all of your leadership positions like being President of Belmont PRSSA and PR Director of Alpha Gamma Delta on top of interning. How do you structure your time management?

AS: I schedule everything I do in my iCal, keep very detailed to-do lists and actually stick to it. By “everything I do,” I mean my meetings, meals, showers, workouts, coffee dates, everything. My to-do lists keep me focused and help me avoid getting caught up on Pinterest or Buzzfeed for an hour. On top of all of this, I am an extrovert who needs to spend time with people, which means little sleep and lots of coffee. When it comes down to it, I am very passionate about everything I do, so I make time for it all.

 

From working for Nashville Fashion Week to assisting at Country Music Association events, you must be an event planning master! What’s been your experience with event planning, and what advice could you give to someone looking to become involved in event planning?

AS: I have been involved with the planning, check-in, seating, decoration, catering, sponsorships, and media of several events. I have two pieces of advice. First, do not expect an easy, glamorous job as an event planner. Event planning is hard work and almost never goes as planned. Secondly, get involved. The best event planners started gaining experience in the industry early and kept notes, contact info and ideas they now use in their career.

 

Any fun stories or mishaps from any of the events?

AS: I have learned firsthand that mishaps occur at every event, no matter how well the team has prepared. At the CMA Music Festival nightly concerts, we used three golf carts to escort members of the media who had heavy equipment. At the end of the second night of the four night festival, one of the golf carts ran out of gas, then the headlights were blown in another golf cart. So, we were down to one golf cart and several media teams ready to get back to their cars and head home. In these types of situations, you just have to stay calm and work diligently to resolve the issue. It’s all about customer service!

 

You’ve interned in the fashion, education and entertainment industries and worked with clients in the health, festival, venue and non-profit industries. How does this mesh and where does your true interest stand?

AS: Within each internship, I focused on helping to create mutually beneficial relationships between an organization and its publics– the core of public relations. However, I learned each industry has its own way of accomplishing this goal. Personally, I feel most passionate about promoting brands and organizations in the fashion and education industries.

 

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

AS: Don’t spread yourself too thin. When you do, you are unable to be extraordinary.

 

What’s the best piece of advice you could give to fellow interns?

AS: Always strive to be a better version of yourself. Discover your talents and values and then strengthen them, instead of trying to develop the talents and values other people possess. Your well-developed talents and character will set you apart and help you stay grounded in who you are.

 

What’s next for you?

AS: I am actually moving to NYC this month. I’ll be there for one semester interning with the Department of Public Relations at Hearst Magazines. It’s my dream internship and I am so excited to get started!

 

Closing thoughts?

AS: If you live in NYC, I would love to meet you this fall!

 

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Intern Spotlight: Courtland Thomas

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Tell me a little bit about yourself and your experience.

CT: I’m a journalist-turned-entrepreneur with a love for fashion, photography, and culture. I knew very early on I needed to move to New York to pursue my interests, and, even though I only applied to two NYC schools, I lucked out. A lot of my experiences meet at the intersection of Luck and Greediness; an opportunity came along, and I was very greedy and took it. As a result, I am very content with my overall experience in NYC and can’t wait to add to it.

 

Where have you interned to date?

CT: A luxury fashion/tech brand, the top modeling agency in the world, a B2B software company, a big-data marketing firm, a mobile app, a menswear blog, a ‘think tank,’ and a fashion PR firm.

 

What’s been your favorite internship and why?

CT: I prefer to think of having favorite parts from each of my internships. In some positions, I’ve had the chance to dress models backstage at Fashion Week and also attend the annual SXSW in Houston. I’ve prepared and presented pitch decks to investors, where I gained a lot of knowledge and skills that I wouldn’t have gained elsewhere. And, for some, it was just the experience itself, of working with like-minded people who are passionate about what they are doing.

 

Why do you intern?

CT: To learn. I emphasize that there is so much learning that needs to take place outside of the classroom prior to graduation, especially at Columbia where there is no real emphasis on pre-professionalism. I started my first internship in New York before I even arrived at Columbia because I was very adempt about learning as much as could about the various industries I was interested in. By interning here and there, and at different levels and in different departments, you eventually begin to learn which ones you dislike and which you want to spend the rest of your life working in. (It’s almost like dating.)

 

Can you elaborate on your comparison between interning and dating? I like that!

CT: Dating isn’t easy, nor is finding the right industry. My best friends and I used to always complain we were far too interested in too many fields to select a major; how would we choose one job? But once you start to really investigate what you’re interested in, and try working there (almost like going out on a first date, second, third…), you begin to understand what feels right. I was convinced I wanted to work in fashion, and, with my interest in journalism and that I barely got through art classes in elementary school, I naturally gravitated to PR. After my my stints at Fashion Weeks in New York and Miami, I realized PR isn’t entirely my favorite, and I moved onto fashion journalism.

 

What would you say is the most valuable thing you’ve learned through all of your experience?

CT: Two things that go hand-in-hand. The first – it’s all about presentation. Whatever you’re doing, you need to think of how it is going to look to the other party, whether it’s a customer, a business partner, a boss, or your parents. Something that appears put-together will look put-together, even if it isn’t. The second would be about passion. It’s so cliché, but for a reason – if you don’t love it, don’t do it. You don’t want to put time and energy into something that you won’t value five years later.

 

What do you think about unpaid internships? Worth it?

CT: It varies on industry, but generally, unpaid internships, regardless of the employer, are unfair to the student. Even cheap stipends aren’t valuable. (Where can you find a lunch under $10 in Manhattan?) However, I understand that some of us must “pay our dues,” especially if we have no experience or knowledge in the field we are interested in. I worked two unpaid internships before I realized I had certain skills that would be beneficial to an employer.

 

How do you define “paying your dues?” How long do you think it takes before your dues are paid?

CT: This relates to thinking in terms of the other party, particularly the company you’re interested in either working at or interning for; if you know nothing about the industry (ie. how it works, why certain things are done the way they are, etc.) you cannot offer much to the company. You have to start somewhere. I never knew how much effort went into a Fashion Week presentation, but I was very grateful a PR firm offered an unpaid internship to me; at the time, I was a bubbly, vivacious pre-college freshman with no fashion experience. Of course, nowadays, students can complete a lot of research online, but I wouldn’t necessarily equate research with real-time experience.

 

Who do you look up to, and who inspires you?

CT: Too many! I love Diane von Furstenberg, Cara Delevingne, and the founders of Proenza Schouler for being fun and true to who they are. I look up to Blair Waldorf, Marie Antoinette, and Cooper Anderson. I’m also inspired by three key entrepreneurs: Angela Ahrendts, who turned around an aging fashion brand; Sarika Doshi, who created an algorithm that determines the most sought-for fashion and beauty products; and my mother, who taught me to work diligently and choose your battles strategically.

 

Do you have any advice for writing a cover letter?

CT: Condense it into one paragraph and stick it in the body of the email. Your email is the first impression you set for yourself, and if it’s a five paragraph rambling of your experiences or a one-liner with no information, you’ve already lost. From the moment you introduce yourself, you need to capture your reader, which often involves summarizing who you are, what skills you have, why you want the work for the employer, and why you’re the best for the position. And yes, in one paragraph.

 

What about for resumes, since it is very important part of your application and is always up for debate by means of presentation?

CT: Don’t try to be fluffy or cute. Cut the fancy script fonts and special presentation. It should be one full page with the margins extended to the edges, one black font (extra points for serif), and the information listed linearly in chronological order in categories: education, recent/relevant experience, less recent/less relevant, and skills, with some space for your interests. I used to interview interns and some of their resumes included self-proclaimed titles like ‘Teen Journalist’ and ‘Superstar Fashionista’ – no.

 

When you interviewed interns, what did you look for? Where there certain mistakes they made that could be avoided?

CT:Passion and knowledge. You need to not only present yourself as intelligent and insightful about the industry the company is related to (whether it be fashion, music, finance, etc.), but also speak with conviction. The two should be easily synced because passion drives you to learn more. A large mistake I see students are making is asking about compensation too quickly. One intern literally asked me how much she would make per hour in a first-round interview. No. You need to explain why you are the best for the position, and once the company expresses an interest in working with you, then ask what compensation is involved, if any.

 

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

CT: Never settle. You should only apply to internships, apply to work at companies, or start companies if they excite you. If your stomach doesn’t churn with nerves on your way to the interview, if you don’t nervously await the response, and if you haven’t already picked out the first day’s outfit, you’re wasting your time. The best experiences are those in which failure is an option, but you work to prove it isn’t.

 

What’s the best piece of advice you could give to fellow interns?

CT: Probably the second best piece of advice I’ve ever received – just do it. If you skip any opportunity that you wholeheartedly consider, for fear of failing, you will literally spend days wondering ‘what if?’ It is better to fail than to not have tried at all; you only learn from the former.

 

You’ve created 292 Magazine and Halcyon Magazine. How did you get started and what was the process like?

CT: Both fell in my lap, and it was very hard to say no to such great opportunities. There was a lack in the market for the two magazines I created, and whereas one began as a hobby that turned into a publication, the other was already a serious publication. Because I had never founded or ran a magazine before, a lot of it was trial-and-error; but we were passionate, so the errors didn’t feel like failures.

 

What advice would you give to someone interested in starting a magazine?

CT: The mistake many first-time magazine publishers make is a lack of balance. A magazine, while can be all creative, isn’t truly successful without the business side. Who are you writing to? Doesn’t something like this exist already? How will you make money? These are the questions that anyone turning a creative hobby into a career needs to contemplate. Find someone who loves doing what you hate. If you don’t want to look at financials, find a statistics major who loves Excel, and vice versa. It’s about balance.

 

What were some of the errors you made in the process, and how did you learn from them?

CT: I didn’t know any of the answers to the questions aforementioned when I started 292 [Magazine,] and I only learned these were the right questions to ask when I started Halcyon [Magazine.] Luckily, however, magazines aren’t as complicated as other industries I’ve worked in; because a magazine is flexible, you can change gears much quicker than, say, a fashion designer, who has to research trends, purchase fabric, and work with a manufacturer weeks in advance.

 

It looks like you’ve risen from interning to obtaining actual jobs. How did you climb the ladder as only a college student?

CT: Passion, commitment, and an insatiable curiosity.

 

What field would you ultimately like to go into? You’ve worked in marketing, editorial, and photography. How do those mesh?

CT: Fashion! It’s such a creative, vibrant industry. The fact that there is always a changing component, that not every day is the same, is most attractive.

 

Where does your interest in fashion stem from? Was is always a passion of your’s?

CT: Pretty much. I’ve liked styling since high school, although I could never communicate my interest clearly. I really enjoyed how people had different styles, and how one outfit would complement one person’s wardrobe, but not another’s. I was really convinced, in the twelfth grade, that I could design clothes, so I staged an eco-fashion show for my philosophy final. Needless to say, my designs never made it to market.

 

How do you juggle all of your commitments? You seem like a pretty busy guy.

CT: I get this question a lot. It’s about passion and discipline. If you think about it, everyone from Alexander Wang to James Franco has 24 hours in one day. You should often prioritize and aim for simplicity. Setting yourself up for success helps: Barack Obama only wears brown and black suits because it is one less decision he has to make each morning.

 

Any interesting stories or celebrity sighting from working at New York Fashion Week?

CT: After brushing arms with Olivia Palermo, spotting John Jannuzzi, and taking a selfie with Chiara Ferragni (I didn’t know she wrote The Blonde Salad at the time!), it’s hard to top S/S 2013.

 

What exactly was your role in working the shows?

CT: I’ve moved around a lot. My first show was dressing the models. One of a bathing top’s straps broke, and we had to quickly fashion a makeshift rubber band in its place seconds before call. My second was coordinating a presentation, involving everything from greetings to gift bags. The next season, I worked in Logistics, communicating with PR agencies to handle seating. My most recent, I attended as press, making standing room at Nautica and sitting front row at Zac Posen. I think the only roles I haven’t yet filled are the model and designer.

 

Wow! Which publication did you attend as press for? Did you sit or stand next to anyone notable?

CT: My own! 292 [Magazine] was awarded press credentials. To be honest, I was more focused on the models. I always find the models more exciting than celebrities. I remember seeing RJ King, Elisabeth Erm, and, watching Coco Rocha open for Zac Posen, was amazing.

 

Dream NYFW Schedule?

CT: Stella McCartney, Carolina Herrera, Dolce & Gabbana, Dior, Topshop, Proenza Schouler, Alexander Wang, and end the week with an industry party.

 

Any networking advice?

CT: Call it ‘making friends,’ not networking.

 

What’s next for you?

CT: Aside from continuing my work with Jon Lou™, launching a photography magazine in September, and attending Fashion Week in the same month, I’m not entirely sure – and that’s what makes it so exciting.

 

Any last words?

CT: I will be be launching a new blog on my adventures in fashion this fall! Stay tuned!

 

 

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Intern Spotlight: Taylor Hicks

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Tell me a little bit about yourself and your experience.

TH: The majority of my life revolves around the fashion industry. I consider myself an exceptionally ambitious and hard-working individual. I’m always focused on my career path and I make it a priority to ensure that I am doing everything that I can to be a more well-rounded individual and fashion industry professional. I am the Fashion Director of my college’s student-run publication FIDM MODE. I also intern four days a week with celebrity stylists Emily Current and Meritt Elliott, who I have been with for a year and half, while also interning at companies such as Jimmy Choo, WhoWhatWear, and Teen Vogue. Interning is easily my biggest interest because I am able to have first-hand experiences with industry professionals and witness their day-to-day triumphs and challenges. In my free time, I love to constantly immerse myself in social media and fashion magazines and fashion news websites to stay current with trends, designers, bloggers, brands, and pop-culture. Overall, I would say that I am someone who wishes to learn and experience new things every day in order to achieve their set goals and pursue the life that they want to live.

 

Where have you interned to date?

TH: Since I began my college career in the summer of 2012, I have had four incredible internships with Emily Current and Meritt Elliott, Jimmy Choo, WhoWhatWear, and Teen Vogue.

 

Why do you intern?

TH: I intern because I feel a strong responsibility for my future and I am deeply passionate about my career path. By interning, I not only bring a lot of joy to myself by working hard to achieve my dreams, but I also have the opportunity to meet and learn from so many fashion industry professionals.

 

What would you say is the most valuable thing you’ve learned through all of your experience?

TH: The most valuable thing that I have learned would be that hard work and dedicated never goes unrecognized. It seems that some interns feel that their contributions and work ethic aren’t always noticed, but from the experiences that I have had, it is evident that bosses and mentors are always paying attention and making mental notes. To me, this is valuable information for interns because it reiterates the fact that it is important to do your best at any task your given and to always go the extra mile.

 

What’s been your favorite internship and why?

TH: I actually have two favorite internships because they were both life-changing experiences for me. Interning with Emily Current and Meritt Elliott has been an experience that has impacted me as a professional tremendously, and I will apply everything they and their team has taught me for the rest of my career. Secondly, my internship at Teen Vogue opened my eyes to a completely different side of the fashion industry and allowed me to expand my knowledge on the ins and outs of a successful publication. Many of the individuals that I had the privilege of working with at Teen Vogue have become huge inspirations and mentors to me.

 

Sounds like you’ve done some pretty cool work for Current Elliott. Can you elaborate?

TH: Yes. I have been interning with Emily Current and Meritt Elliott since the summer of 2012. They, along with their team, are some of the most determined and hard-working professionals that I have ever had the pleasure of being around. Emily and Meritt are exceptionally creative and detail-oriented people and it’s mind blowing to think of everything that they have accomplished in their lives so far. Even though they are two extremely successful women, they still remain so considerate, honest, and down to earth. I learn so much every day from simply watching them work, seeing their creative process, and understanding how they gracefully balance all of the different aspects of their lives. Overall, being able to intern for Emily and Meritt has been one of the greatest and most influential experiences in my life thus far.

 

Who are some of the mentors that have inspired you?

TH: I have had several. Lindsey Dupuis is the Styling Associate to Emily Current and Meritt Elliott. I have had the honor of working with Lindsey for the past year and a half and she has been the best mentor anyone could ask for. Since the first day of my internship she has taken me under her wing and taught me so many valuable lessons. Furthermore, Lindsey has trusted me with a great deal of responsibility and allowed me to test my instincts and express my opinions. I am very grateful to have her as a mentor in my life. Other wonderful professionals that have inspired me and served as mentors are Lindsey Leaf, Teen Vogue’s Executive Director of Merchandising and Special Projects, Kelly Mytrowitz, Teen Vogue’s Special Events Director, Baileigh Johnson, Teen Vogue’s Promotions Assistant, and finally, Brooke Jaffe, Bloomingdale’s OVP Fashion Director for RTW.

 

How do you juggle interning, school, and acting as the Fashion Director of FIDM’s student-run magazine, FIDM MODE?

TH: It is extremely difficult to balance everything going on in my academic and professional life but I’m a Libra so balancing is in my nature! My secrets to organization are to-do lists and planners. At the beginning of every week, I make a to-do list of everything that I need to accomplish that week and order it according to level of importance. I keep the to-do list on me at all times and whenever I complete a task, I mark it off or if I think of a new task, I add it on. I also write down every event that is happening in my life in my monthly planner so that I can look at it at any given moment to prepare myself for what is ahead. I think that it’s all about prioritizing and giving up certain aspects of life to jump ahead in others. For example, I don’t have a very big social life because I am always at school, in meetings with the FIDM MODE team, on set at photo shoots, or interning. I have just been very fortunate that my classmates, team members, and fellow interns have served as some of my very best friends. Everyone has a different groove; they just have to find out what works best for them.

 

Do you have any advice for writing a cover letter?

TH: Of course! A cover letter is a crucial part of the application process in that it gives the applicant an opportunity to express their interest in the company and explain why they would be a great candidate for the position. I think that it is important for a cover letter to be an accurate representation of the person writing it. It’s also nice to include recognition keywords that match the description of the position in a cover letter so employers see that research has been done.

 

What about for resumes, since it is very important part of your application and is always up for debate by means of presentation?

TH: I personally believe that resumes should always be kept clean, clear, and professional. Based on what I have learned from professionals and my own personal experiences, resumes are not looked at for long periods of time so it is important that a resume instantly grabs potential employers’ attention. It’s equally as important for a resume to be individualized and catered to the position one is applying for. A previous mentor of mine recently stressed the importance of showcasing one’s best skills on a resume to better differentiate oneself from other applicants. Ultimately, I would advise keeping a resume very professional and understandable while clearly showcasing one’s strongest attributes.

 

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

TH: The best piece of advice that I have ever been given is from my mother. She has always told me that anything is possible if you are willing to work for it. I believe this advice with every ounce of my being, because I have seen it happen for myself and many other people that I know.

 

What’s the best piece of advice you could give to fellow interns?

TH: The best piece of advice that I could give would be to always have ambition. It is the quality that ultimately will separate anyone from the rest of the group. When an intern has ambition, they will always be the first one to raise their hand, the last one to leave at night, and the only one who will always have a smile on their face no matter what the situation. I think it’s very important for the people you work with to know that you love being there and that there is nowhere else you would rather be. That’s the intern that ultimately gets hired.

 

 

 

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Intern Spotlight: Taylor Lane

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Tell me a little bit about yourself and your experience.

TL: I am from a small town right outside of Baltimore called Catonsville. I did one semester at a community college, then transferred to Lasell College in Massachusetts. Right before the start of my senior year, I decided that I wanted to finally pursue my dream of living in New York City and working at a fashion magazine. Soon after, I enrolled at LIM College, where I am now a senior.

 

Where have you interned to date?

TL: The sole reason I moved to New York City was to intern at a fashion magazine. I applied to ELLE Magazine last Spring after seeing a posting for interns on FreeFashionInternships.com, and I was so shocked to get a call back. I still remember getting the email welcoming me. I then, briefly, interned at a small modeling agency this past summer: Agency Model Management. Then, in the Fall, I started at Vogue.

 

What’s been your favorite internship and why?

TL: I have been extremely lucky in the fact that I fell in love with all of my internships. All have of them have been beneficial and great preparation for the real world! Elle was my first internship and confirmed my love for working at a fashion publication. I truly learned the basics of fashion, how a magazine operated, and it also increased my knowledge of designers and PR companies. Interning at a modeling agency showed me the more hands on end of how models get cast for ads and appear in publications. Learning about castings was a nice change. Then, interning at Vogue was a dream come true. I truly learned that being an employee at Vogue is what I wanted to do for a career.

 

What was your position at Vogue?

TL: At Vogue, I worked in the Fashion Department with the market editors and the fashion coordinator. The majority of our responsibilities were prepping for photo shoots and assisting with anything certain editors needed.

 

Vogue is a pretty prestigious company. How did you manage to land an internship there?

TL: I had applied to the Conde Nast intern program too many times to count. I also sent my resume to various employees at Vogue but never received a response. One night this past summer, I could not sleep so I was just googling for internships, and I saw a posting on a message board stating that Vogue was looking for interns. I first thought it was a scam, but I sent my resume anyways. I thought nothing of it. I woke up the next morning and looked at my phone and saw that I had a message from a Vogue email address. The message was asking me to come to interview! I was so nervous and was sure I blew the interview due to how short it was. I was not supposed to hear if I got the position until late August, but I was offered it the next day. It was an indescribable moment! To this day, I can not believe that I was a Vogue intern.

 

Was it intimidating?

TL: I will never forgot the sick feeling I had when security buzzed me in through the turnstiles at the Conde Nast building. I had to wait in the lobby until my supervisor came out. It was the longest ten minutes of my life. The first day was intimidating, learning how things worked in the office and, plus, I started the week of fashion week, so it was hectic. I was so scared to mess up! I also had a hard time managing school, interning, and a job on the weekend. It was intimidating finding a set schedule to stick to.

 

What was it like going to work at the Conde Nast building every morning?

TL: It is busy in the morning. Everyone always seems to rush in at the same time. It is funny because the majority of those coming in to the building are interns. The employees come in later, around 10 AM. The building is always busy with visitors or those coming in for interviews. Waiting for the elevators every morning is fun. You never know who you are going to see!

 

Have you met/seen Anna?

TL: I have not met her personally, but have said good morning and excuse me on occasion. I have also handed her coffee since her assistant was in a rush. Anna is always in the office, so seeing her walking about is not uncommon. My first day, I turned the corner and almost walked right into her. I froze! Most of my Anna run-ins involved me almost always walking into her as I turned a corner or rushed into the elevator. Seeing her, I still am “starstruck.” She is commanding, yet maintains such a feminine demeanor. I truly admire her work. I never will forget seeing her walk out of the Conde Nast building as I was walking in, and how many people were just in awe of her. I hope to, one day, be that much of an influence

 

Is it actually like The Devil Wears Prada?

TL: [laughs] That is one of the most asked questions from my friends and family. I expected Vogue to be like the movie and all of the employees to act a certain way. I was surprised that it is quite the opposite. Miranda Priestly’s office does resemble Anna’s office and certain characters from the movie represent a few current employees. Also, in the movie, when Miranda has to review what is put into every issue, Anna does that. Racks are rolled into her office, and she has the editors show her what they plan to put in a certain story. Anna then approves or edits from there.

 

Do you have any good stories from your time at Vogue?

TL: One day, Anna’s assistant asked me to help her carry flowers to a car. I thought it was a simple bouquet, but they were huge arrangements! Carrying them covered almost my whole body! When I came out and the other interns saw me, of course, the Devil Wears Prada quote came out, “Put it on the table, the table with the flowers.” Everyone bursted out laughing. There were also times when we would have to push 20 to 30 trunks down to our fright area. Watching interns do this is a comedy show! The security guards always had a laugh. The millions of times I would not be paying attention while turning a corner and almost knocking Anna over were not funny at the time, but looking back, I am sure she knows me as the clumsy intern. Also, frantically running around down the streets of New York City when a cab was not fast enough because you are trying to get a garment back to the office in time for a run-through are just a few crazy times I experienced this semester.

 

Why do you think Conde Nast ended their internship program? Did you see or experience anything that would make them do so?

TL: I think that the program ended do to the poor decision of the former interns who are suing Conde Nast. As a company, their main goal is to protect their profits and reputation. If the program continued, I am sure other interns would twist a story in order to sue, and then it would be out of control. The accusations that these former interns have made, I have never seen nor experienced. I believe that these interns did not know the magnitude of work that the internships required and, therefore, have made situations worse than they were for personal gain. Maybe there were experiences that happened to the certain interns, I can not give an answer regarding that, since I did not intern with them.

 

Do you agree with their decision?

TL: Not at all. It actually enrages me! I think it is going to deter thousands of students from receiving a rich internship experience from some of the best publications.

 

Do you think is is justifiable for interns to sue previous employers for mistreatment?

TL: I think you know what you are getting into when you work in the fashion industry, especially at a fashion publication. The hours are long, and never guaranteed to be 9 to 5. Before agreeing to intern, I think that students should be more educated about the company and the work ethic required to succeed there. Vogue is an extremely prestigious company with a reputation to uphold. It is one of the leading fashion publications in the world. The interns should have known it was going to be hard work, and if they were unhappy, they could have left at any time. These students were thinking about their own gain, and not the millions of dreams that they were taking away from other students. I think it betrays the trust that a certain company puts in their interns by suing. If the conditions were those of sweatshops, then, yes, it would be justifiable for legal action, but no where in Conde Nast is like that.

 

What are your thoughts on treatment in the magazine industry? Did you see any differentiation between publications?

TL: I have been lucky at my two publication internships. I have never experienced mistreatment or “slave labor.” I have been respected and treated like I work at my internships. I do think that the hours are hard to manage while being a student and sometimes that it becomes overwhelming. Maybe less days or hours that publications require could be cut down. I would work almost the same hours during my time at ELLE and Vogue.

 

What are your overall feelings about being one of the last Vogue interns? It’s a pretty special title.

TL: When my group of interns heard the news it was very shocking. I honestly thought it was a rumor. Having this title made the last few weeks of my internship sentimental. The other interns and I became closer and really appreciated the moments that we had that so many others would have loved. The long days and hard work became more enjoyable. The last day at Vogue, I actually sat in the bathroom and cried, knowing I would not be back unless I was hired. When it is your dream to be at Vogue and then suddenly it all ends it’s heartbreaking. I realized how blessed I was to have the opportunity that I did, and I wish that others who share the same dream could have the experiences that I did.

 

Do you have any advice for those who still have their heart set on gaining magazine experience?

TL: I would say keep trying to gain that experience! There are multitudes of magazines that need help, it just takes some research. Send your resume to editors, or their assistants directly, even if it is to introduce yourself. If your college has a magazine, try to get involved as much as possible. Also, interning abroad at a publication is another option. I have found that just getting your resume out to any publication you can pays off!

 

What’s next for you?

TL: This fall will be my last semester of college. I will have to do a senior internship. I plan on going abroad either to London or Paris to intern at a publication. Fingers crossed! In the meantime, I will be volunteering at Market Week which is coming up this February.

 

 

 

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Intern Spotlight: Katie Cook

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Tell me a little bit about yourself and your experience.

KC: I’m a junior at Florida State University, and an “Intern Queen” in training. Besides holding 8 campus rep internships at the moment, I teach dance, am the community service chair for CMA, the advertising director for CLUTCH Magazine on FSU campus, and am a sister of Alpha Omicron Pi.

 

Where have you interned to date?

KC: Formally, I have interned at Intern Queen, Total Betty Society, The Pink Chalet Boutique, and Bella Blue Boutique. I have also partnered and/or held campus rep positions with 15+ brands.

 

Why do you intern?

KC: I really love learning about different brands from the inside. Having execs come to me for options or watching a task I worked on come to life is so satisfying. I know that all the hard work I’m putting in now will pay off one day. It is the best experience you can get.

 

So, you’re basically the queen of campus repping! How did you get started with that and what have you been a campus ambassador for to date?

KC: I knew by not going to school in the North East and having the industry as accessible, I would have to find some way to stand out. So, Fall semester Freshman year I joined a thousand clubs. I was sitting in a club meeting one day and the Victoria Secret PINK Campus Reps came to visit to give us their spiel about being reps. I instantly thought it was such a cool and brilliant concept that I had to be apart of. That Spring, I interviewed for their “Street Team” and ended up getting the position! About a month later I found out that Rent the Runway also had a program. Once I got that position, I realized that this was something I could do. This was what was going to set me apart.

 

What exactly is a campus rep?

KC: A campus rep is a form of virtual interning on your college campus. It allows you promote and share your passion for  the brand with guerilla style marketing around campus, using everything from social media, to planning events, to visiting club, to tablings. You have a chance to speak to the corporate offices and offer them your ideas and opinions, and sometimes get to watch them come to life!

 

What brands/companies have you repped to date?

KC: To date, I’ve repped: Victoria’s Secret Pink, Rent the Runway, U by Kotex, Intern Queen, IHS, Hanky Panky, Cosmopolitan Magazine, Neutrogena, L’Oreal, Bobble Water Bottle, Flex Watches, Seventeen Freshman Blog, Third Channel, Belk, and a few other partner brands.

 

What are some of the benefits of being a campus ambassador?

KC: Every company varies, but some rewards I have received include free products, gift cards, college credit, trips to corporate offices, interviews for Summer internships, and even cash! To be cliche and cheesy, having my opinions heard and valued by a company is one of the best benefits.

 

What does being a campus rep entail? What is the commitment like?

KC: For most rep programs about an average of 5 hours a week does the trick. It ranges between daily emails, flyerings, tablings, club visits, conference calls, meetings, and planning/hosting events.

 

How do you find out about all of these campus rep positions?

KC: For me, typically one led me to another and companies have asked me to take them on. However, sites like Third Channel and Intern Queen have helped me out. Even just making your dream list, going to the website of a company, and seeing what they offer can lead you to a rep program!

 

What is the application process like?

KC: Normally, there is an online application asking your school, year, and what you are involved in on campus, as well as a place for you to upload your resume. From there, either a phone or skype interview comes next. Typically, companies want there to be exclusivity in their programs and hire only a few reps per school.

 

What has been your favorite campus rep position to date and why?

KC: This is such a hard choice, but it has to be Rent the Runway. I’ve worked for the company for about 3 years now, which means I started when the company was only a year old. I’ve really got the chance to watch it grow and build great relationships. They’ve even referred me to other campus positions and asked my advice when restructuring their program.

 

What would you say is the biggest benefit of being a campus rep?

KC: I would say the biggest benefit, besides the resume builder, is simply getting the taste of what each company is like. Your program coordinator is typically an open book for you to ask questions to, so take advantage of that. It really gives you an idea of companies out there, helps you decide what type of companies you would want to work with, and what area of the industry you would like to potentially work in one day.

 

What do you find is the biggest difference between being a campus rep and an intern?

KC: The biggest difference is in being a campus rep, you are promoting to your school. When being a classic intern, you are promoting to the world. Therefore, the hours are different as well as some of the daily tasks. However, I do consider all my rep programs to be internships. When I am posting about that flash sale happening right now on my Facebook, more than just my school is seeing it.

 

Have you made any connections being a campus rep?

KC: Absolutely! Not only have I met execs from incredible companies, but I’ve met some of my best friends. We are always recommending each other and sharing new ideas and positions. It really is about who you know, so this is a great place to start building your network.

 

Do you have any advice for someone looking to branch out into the campus rep world?

KC: Do not represent a brand that does not represent you. It has to be a mutually beneficial relationship. If a company you are super passionate about does not offer a program, find out who is in charge on internships and present the idea to them. The worst they can say is no.

 

What would you say is the most valuable thing you’ve learned through all of your experience?

KC: The most valuable thing I have learned is time management and communication skills. At the moment, I hold 8 campus rep positions, am on exec of two clubs, have a job, am in a sorority, am a full-time student, and still manage a social life. At the end of the day, I can and will take on more projects along the way as well. You succeed with these companies by being accessible in a quick and timely manner, with things done right. So, doing a few emails or hopping on a conference call between classes is not a big deal.

 

Have you had a mentor or someone who has inspired you?

KC: Lauren Berger, the Intern Queen, is my mentor. She came to my campus Freshman year to speak and was so passionate about everything I am passionate about. This past summer, I had the wonderful opportunity to intern for her and continue on as a campus rep. Before every interview, I pull out her book, “ All Work and No Pay”, to freshen up my skills. If I have questions, she’s always there with an answer. I also have a thank you note from her framed on my desk for some daily inspiration!

 

What’s next for you?

KC: I hope to continue on with these positions as I finish up my college career. Hopefully, one of them will lead to a full-time job and maybe eventually graduate school. I’m keeping an open mind to things!

 

Final thoughts?

KC: When doing campus rep positions, you also learn a lot about how to represent yourself. Don’t be afraid to say no, and don’t be afraid to embarrass yourself. Go above and beyond. I once made up a rap to a Justin Bieber song about a brand I was repping. I ended up winning $300 and a summer internship and on top of that. Today, all the execs know who I am and loved it! Also, read everything you can get your hands on, and don’t forget to send a thank you note!

 

 

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Intern Spotlight: Mallory Levy

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Tell me a little bit about yourself and your experience.

ML: I’m currently a student at the Fashion Institute of Technology, majoring in Fashion Merchandising Management with a minor in Economics. I moved to New York three years ago, and I started interning during my second semester at FIT. This Spring, I’ll be starting my twelfth internship at Tom Ford.

 

Where have you interned to date?

ML: Everywhere! [laughs] But really, I’ve interned for a lot of different companies since moving to New York. I recently completed my Fall internship at PR Consulting, where I was on the Versace and Christopher Kane account. Prior that, I’ve interned at Proenza Schouler, Burberry, Jimmy Choo, Alexander Wang, Nanette Lepore, Nicole Miller, and ELLE magazine, among others.

 

Why do you intern so much?

ML: Well, a lot of people in my family have either gone to FIT or have worked in the fashion industry at one point or another, and they’ve all stressed the importance of interning and making connections while I’m still in school. I first started interning during the second semester of my freshman year at FIT, and all of the other people I was interning with were either seniors or had already graduated from college. Most of them didn’t have a job lined up, and that was a really scary thing to see. I wanted to set myself up to make sure that that wouldn’t happen to me, so after I finished my first internship six months later, I started looking for my next opportunity. From there, I just kept going. People always ask me why I intern every single semester instead of taking a break, but in my mind, since I already live in New York City, one of the major fashion capitals of the world, it doesn’t really make sense to not take full advantage of my location and all of the opportunities in front of me.

 

As a freshman, how did you get yourself out there? Like you said, you were competing with seniors and post-grads.

ML: It’s actually really funny. At that point, I had almost no experience. I had moved to New York six months prior and had only worked a few shows at fashion week the season before. I was working as a Barista at Starbucks at the time, and I had next to nothing on my resume. I decided that I wanted to intern over winter break, mainly because I had absolutely nothing to do and I didn’t want to just sit alone in my apartment for a month and a half. I went into the Career and Internship Center at FIT, and they refused to help me. They told me that I couldn’t intern until the following year, but not to worry, because “you only need one or two internships to get a job anyway.” (I later realized that this is completely untrue and outdated advice). So, I took it into my own hands to find an internship. I probably applied to 15 or 20 companies, and I didn’t hear back from any of them. Finally, I was called in for a group interview for an editorial internship at JoonBug.com. I was so nervous going into the interview because everyone else in the group had already graduated or was a journalism major. When it was my turn to speak, I spoke about my passion for the industry, why I loved the website, and why I wanted to intern for the company, and I ended up getting it over everyone else. Come to think of it, I actually found out about the internship from a posting on Craigslist, of all places. [laughs]

 

Really? I would never think to look on Craigslist!

ML: Yeah, some of the postings did seem a bit sketchy [laughs], but there actually are a lot of good opportunities that are advertised under the “Jobs” section.

 

It’s all about hustling.

ML: Exactly! I emailed them and I heard back a few days later. It wasn’t even my major! I saw the listing and applied for it because, quite simply, I love writing, which is exactly what I told them. And it worked out really well.

 

What would you say is the most valuable thing you’ve learned through all of your experience?

ML: I think the most valuable thing I’ve learned is the importance of finding opportunities that you’re really passionate about, and also to stay really, really focused on everything that you’re doing. If you’re not fully committed to your work, it becomes really difficult to shine in the eyes of your supervisor, which is really the whole point of interning in the first place – to make connections within the industry that you hope to have a career in. Also, I know I mentioned the importance of networking a few times, but its important to remember to build connections not only with your direct supervisor, but also with the other employees in the company and your fellow interns. You never know who will help you down the road. Also, I’ve met some of my best friends at past internships.

 

What’s been your favorite internship and why?

ML: My favorite internship was definitely when I interned at ELLE during my sophomore year. I just loved being at the magazine! I love writing; I’m always reading; and I probably subscribe to 25 different magazines already. ELLE was always my favorite. I interned there for six months in total, and while it was a lot of hard work (think 10-12 hour days, three days a week), it was an amazing experience, and I learned so much while I was there. It’s one of the most influential magazines in the world, and I think by interning at ELLE and working in the fashion and accessories closets and with the market director, I was able to develop an appreciation for the quality and attention to detail in luxury garments. There is definitely a difference between Zara and Zac Posen [laughs]. It also gave me a deeper appreciation for some of the more obscure designers that I wouldn’t have otherwise known about, like Haider Ackermann, Dries van Noten, and Ann Demeulemeester, who are now three of my favorite designers.

 

Have you had a mentor or someone who has inspired you?

ML: One person who has always really inspired me is Kelly Cutrone. She’s kind of awesome. Even before I decided that I wanted to go into public relations, I was so inspired by her because she is so focused, so dedicated, her career is her top priority in her life, and she only wears black. And now I only wear black. [laughs]

 

Do you have any advice for writing a cover letter?

ML: Well, there’s the obvious: education, experience, and an interest in the company. Also, try not to sound like a college student as you’re writing it. Its always a good idea to look at samples of cover letters online, or even to have a professor or someone in the internship office at your school take a look at it. It may seem like a lot of work, but you want to make sure you put the best version of yourself forward.

 

What about for resumes, since it is very important part of your application and is always up for debate by means of presentation?

ML: I think it really depends. As an intern, I usually get the task of looking through my boss’ email and weeding through the internship applications. Its important to make sure everything is clean, open, and easy to read. Also, make sure to avoid using weird fonts or colors, and definitely don’t include picture of yourself.

 

You’ve had a lot of experience with 12 internships, so how do you feel about the “your resume has to fit on one page” rule?

ML: I definitely adhere to that. A lot of people have told me that it can be more than one page, especially since I’ve done so much and everything is pretty recent, but I think that would be completely ridiculous because professionals who have worked in fashion for 30 years are able to keep it to one page. I’m in college, so what right do I have to have a resume that’s three pages long? [laughs] I try to include the most recent things that I’ve done, because they’re often the most relevant. Also, I don’t believe that adding an “objective” section is crucial, because the person reading your resume and cover letter already knows what your objective is – to get an internship at their company! Overall, I make sure that my resume represents the absolute best of what I’ve done.

 

Do you have any good stories?

ML: Last week, when I was dropping something off at Vogue, Grace Coddington walked right by me!

 

Oh, my God! Did you say anything?

ML: She looked right at me, because I probably had my mouth hanging open [laughs]. Somehow, I managed to say “hi”, and to tell her how much I admired her work.

 

Did she say anything back?

ML: She smiled, and said “thank you.” I can’t remember the last time I was that starstruck!

 

Have you met anyone else that’s amazing?

ML: This isn’t really an interning story, but last summer, when I was interning at Alexander Wang, me and another intern really hit it off and we went to go get drinks after we finished for the day. He was on Twitter and saw that Karl Lagerfeld was having his party for Little Black Book that night in Soho, and we were already in the Tribeca area. So, we just walked by to see if we could spot anyone famous. Joan Smalls was out front, and my friend took a picture with her. The women taking care of the guest list thought we were waiting to get into the event, so we gave our names (which obviously weren’t on the list), and by some miracle they actually let us in! Penn Badgley, Dakota Fanning, Carine Roitfeld and, of course, Karl Lagerfeld were all there. I got to meet him and I told him that he’s amazing. He was wearing white gloves and dark sunglasses, even though it was 9 pm and we were indoors. He really keeps true to his image which is wonderful.

 

Final thoughts?

ML: Intern as often and as early as possible. One [internship] is not enough; two is not enough. No matter what your school tells you; aim for three, four, five, or even ten. You’ll be so thankful you did!

 

 

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