2014 TATM Student Interns

During Summer 2014, a total of 97 (27 for credit) TATM students experienced the “real world of industry” with valuable internship experiences. Students both undergraduate and graduate were able to experience:

  • Design (Aesthetics, functional, technical, “expressive” – tie to brands)
  • Product development
  • Merchandising
  • Marketing (brand marketing)
  • Retail and Wholesale
  • Brand development
  • Marketing Communications and Public Relations

Bachelor of Science (BS) Degree Concentration Key:

  • FTD – Fashion and Textile Design
    • FD – Fashion Design
    • TD – Textile Design
  • FTM – Fashion and Textile Management
    • TBMM – Textile Brand Management and Marketing
    • FDPM – Fashion Development and Product Management
    • RSCM – Retail and Supply Chain Management in Textiles
  • TT – Textile Technology
To view student profiles:
Angelika BarthAngelika Barth, BS, FTD
Concentration: FD
Internship Site: Quiksilver/Roxy, Company Division: Swimwear and Footwear, Huntington Beach, CA
Title: Design Intern
As a Roxy design intern at Quiksilver headquarters, I observed how a major corporation is run from both business and creative sides. I began my internship meeting with HR and working with the creative concept team and finished with the shoe and swim designers. I grew a greater appreciation for those who keep up with email and care about the details, because that is what really made this company successful– a bunch of stellar designers working together.

A few of my weekly job responsibilities and projects as a Roxy design intern included: organizing Pantone color stories for 2015, preparing merchandise for buyer review, taking notes in print and vendor meetings, 3D photography layouts for e-commerce, putting vintage and market research clothing purchases together for holiday 2015 theme concept book, fit modeling, organizing and labeling textile fabrication samples for the shoe design department, market research, etc. While the shoe designers finished prototyping and critiquing fall ‘15, I worked on designing Holiday ’15. My final project consisted of a proposed collection of women’s shoes ranging from flip flops and sandals for warm door (think Australia) to casual boots, snow boots, and lounge for cold door (US) in multiple colorways via Adobe Illustrator as spec packages as well as a few accessories, swimsuits, and apparel pieces to be worn with the shoes.

Main Concepts learned: Each designer I interviewed had valuable advice. One of my mentors, the head swim designer Bre (former Billabong swim designer) relayed the importance of networking and connections, being nice, and having thick skin in this industry to really be successful. During my time interning, the company was in the process of moving their entire design team to Europe so a few of the meetings were spoken in French which inspired me to spend some of my free time learning the language and researching companies and facilities in France.

Major Opportunities provided: As an intern I had the opportunity of attending the XY Materials fair and meeting with important vendors and department directors and designers. When gathering research for my final project I was able to set up personal meetings with the sourcing, product development, concept development, swim, shoe, and accessories department heads through my supervisor. Interviewing these designers and forming these relationships were personally the most inspiring and rewarding opportunities for me.

Mekenzie Bazen

Mekenzie Bazen, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Feelgoodz, Marketing and Store Management, Raleigh, NC
Title: Intern
The three most important duties I carried were Visual Merchandising, Marketing, and Inventory. The first project I completed for Feelgoodz was the window display, and floor plan for the store. We re-did the entire layout based on my collaborated ideas alongside one of my coworkers. Another huge responsibility in the store was taking care of inventory. Every Tuesday I would update the spreadsheets based on what was in the store, both on the floor and back stock. When merchandise was running low, I was in direct communication with the warehouse and had to prioritize what was coming, and when it was coming. Finally, I was responsible for our social media including Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and some of our blog posts. This, along with visual merchandise, was one of my favorite parts of work. Trying to create new ways of reaching our target audience was exciting and forced me to use some of my lessons learned through previous courses.

One of the main concepts I learned was brand awareness. As a fairly new store, Feelgoodz still needs to get their name out and talked about. By utilizing all of our social media, this was definitely a helpful step in the right direction. I also participated in a week trip with the store and ventured down to Gulf Shores, AL where we really strived to get our name out. After the trip, our online sales, and Whole Foods accounts were sky rocketing. With this, I would also have to stress how important it is to advertise. Whether that is through a print ad, visual ad, or word of mouth, promoting your brand is what will carry your company in the beginning stages of being recognized.

A major opportunity provided was the opportunity to travel with my employees, whom I didn’t know well at the time, and all come together to reach one goal was a huge moment for me. Before going on the trip, I thought it was going to be a leisurely vacation per say, but once I got down there I was working 12 hour days on my feet simply selling the product. Most people had no clue who our company was, and this was a test for me in the regard that I was having to put all of my knowledge and skill set into not only selling, but promoting. In the end, our team sold over $6000 within the four days we were allotted.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that I learned so much about brand promotions, advertising, brand awareness, and the list goes on and on. Finally being able to have some hands on experience that correlated with all of these concepts was a first for me and I found myself much more prepared than I expected. Also, having some exposure to how the supply chain works was interesting, and at times rather messy. There’s a lot that goes into this sector, requiring a lot of communication amongst an array of people.

Margaret BickelMargaret Bickel, BS, FTM
Concentration: FDPM
Internship Site: Deep South Mountaineering, Company Division: Sewn Products, Durham, NC
Title: Sewn Products Internship

Design and design ideation, prototyping, sample making, pattern making of hiking rain skirt and hiking gaiters, research manufacturers and material sourcing, development instructions for manufacturing of skirt and gaiters, and research of competitors’ products.

I completed key projects that included:

Prototype of Rain Skirt for hiking, production sample of Rain Skirt for hiking, prototype of Hiking Gaiters, prototype of unisex shorts, production samples (small, medium, large) of shorts, spreadsheet of materials, and instructions for Rain Skirt & gaiters.

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

Design ideation, functional design, revision of designs, materials Sourcing, manufacturing documentation,  and creating accurate illustrations of cut pieces.
The major opportunity provided was producing a product, beginning with research of competitors and moving through design, revision, and prototyping. Meeting with manufacturers and learning about the production process. Also, learning about the operation of a small business.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that I learned to create a product from the very beginning. I began with research, moved through design ideation, prototyping, revision of the prototype, and finally created a production sample. I met with manufacturers and learned about the production process. I learned that it is better to make products simple, less cutting and less pieces allows for a lower cost of manufacturing. I learned how to make a spec sheet for materials and production instructions. It is important to describe the production process in detail to avoid mistakes in assembly.

Kelsey BooleKelsey Boole, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Peter Millar, Division: Merchandising Design, Raleigh, NC
Title: Photoshoot Production Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included “prepping clothing,” steaming and ironing, driving to Durham to pick up inventory from the Peter Millar warehouse, organize the sample closet, organize showroom, and help run the photoshoots.

The key projects I completed were the line and look books.

Some of the main concepts I have learned through my internship is how much detail goes into creating a line and look book, I have learned what a laydown shot is and how to prep one, as well as what goes on during a sales meeting.

The major opportunities provided during my internship was working first hand with stylists, networking with the individuals I have met as well as the opportunity to sit inside a sales meeting and see what goes on.

This internship related to my degree/concentration because I got to better understand production trends. For example, what styles are popular and which colors and styles you continue to produce the next season. Secondly, I learned positioning products for success in the show room.  It is important how you set up the show room and place your products so they are shown off in the best possible way. For example, organizing shirts not randomly, but by color. I also learned some international strategies such that Peter Millar creates their international wear slim fit.

Callen BurrilCallen Burril, BS, TT
Concentration: TT
Internship Site: Jawbreaking, Raleigh, NC
Title: Social Media Intern
This summer I had the opportunity to be the social media intern for Jawbreaking, a clothing company located in Raleigh, NC.  Jawbreaking is an independent clothing retailer who designs graphic t shirts, dresses, hats, and sportswear.  They have no store fronts so they do 100% of their sales online, which made the presence of social media even more important to the business.

My main responsibilities were creating attractive posts and overseeing all of the various forms of social media used by Jawbreaking including Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Tumblr, Wanelo, YouTube, and Snapchat.  I learned the power social media really holds in the industry, this being the only form of advertising Jawbreaking used, and also the importance of having a dedicated customer base.  Interacting with the over 100,000 Jawbreaking followers was an important part of my everyday routine. This let the customers know that they were heard and appreciated and would encourage them to shop with us again.

Since Jawbreaking is a relatively small company I had the opportunity to be involved in every aspect of the business.  I was in on conference calls with upcoming celebrity collaborations, present for interviews with various news sources, and worked behind the scenes for the photo shoot of the new summer line.  This internship gave me valuable insight into the fashion retail world as well as knowledge in running a startup company.

Elysia CadornigaElysia Cadorniga, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Gap Inc., Division: Marketing, New York, NY
Title: Global Consumer Insights Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included: Producing a market campaign for the group innovation project, managing the MYB blog, crunching data for the Weekly Digital Report for all social media platforms, attending marketing department meetings, offering insight and research assistance to other team members and doing off-site research with competitors.

The key projects I completed included: Innovation Project- This was group intern project where we collaborated together to brainstorm a new concept or collection for the Gap brand. Our goal was to fill the “white space” with something new, innovative and slightly risky in hopes that the company can use it for the future.

Personal Project- I decided to invent my own “personal project” while interning titled, ‘Started from the Bottom’ where I gathered insights and told my story as an in-store employee in hope of bringing Gap’s inconsistencies to life. In this project, I tackled these issues and offered possible opportunities for the brand to grow and increase employee wellbeing.

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

The depths of research in consumer insights and the value of understanding your target market.
The strategy and software used to gather digital and social metrics. How a company applies these two methods in order to implement new ideas and move forward in marketing campaigns.

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

Being able to work alongside with the Attica Jacques, VP of Brand Management and Seth Farbman, CMO. Offering my own personal insight to the company and seeing them work around my knowledge at the store level. Working hands on with holiday presentations for marketing. Volunteering at the Harlem Kids Zone and being part of something larger myself. Having the potential to come back next summer and finish and finalize projects that I plan to implement for Gap. Attending a focus group on men’s khakis and essential tees.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that I was hands on with every aspect of consumer behavior- from gathering qualitative and quantitative data to off-site research. I am now more familiar with specific software and tools used to gather insights (examples include YouGov, Radian6, Curalate, etc.). I have a better understanding of the structure of the marketing team and the people involved with making a brand come to life.

Tanner CliftonTanner Clifton, BS, FTM
Concentration: FDPM
Internship Site: Circa 1801/Valdese Weavers, Company Division: Design, Valdese, NC
Title: Design/Product Development Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:  Preparing and shipping packages of samples to sales representatives, assist in making merchandising presentation boards of different color families to show potential buyers, sort yarn palettes by color family and hue, close design projects in SAP, organized Showtime Line Blanket boxes for all residential brands, and look for artwork in archives to give designers new ideas.

The key project(s) I completed included: Designing a stripe fabric and assembling trend books and line books for June ITMA Showtime.

Some of the main concepts I learned were: How to properly research trends in home furnishings and color, EAT design software basics, SAP operating system, the weave effects of using different warp and fill yarns, the effects of different backings and finishes, EPI/PPI, how fabric is priced, and how show rooms are set up in an aesthetically pleasing manner.

Some of the major opportunities provided were: A couple of major opportunities I had over the course of my internship were designing a stripe and attending ITMA Showtime in High Point, North Carolina.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:  The internship showed me the many steps it takes in designing product, as well as how companies prepare for trade shows.  I also learned the basics of a woven jacquard design software called EAT.

Alexandra Cohen

Alexandra Cohen, BS,
Internship Site: Klaud, Lima, Peru
Title: Intern
The country of Peru operates with the co-existence of rural and urban, equity gaps, and a vast variance in scenery, culture, and language. This explains the context of my internship with Klaud, working with a company dedicated to the artisans of the extremely diverse, developing, and rich country of Peru.

My projects with Klaud reflected this diversity of opportunity and involved working with 3 main efforts. The first was acting as a liaison for a knitwear company in the U.K., Wool and the Gang. The Gang has a production workshop in Lima, Peru, so within my first week I was traveling across the city to perform quality control checks and familiarize with the products. Meanwhile, I was developing production specs for an upcoming order and maintaining contact between the team in the U.K. and the workshop in Lima.

As production continued, I was able to do some market research for a specialty yarn project in the Puno providence. Funded to build capacity and further the economic welfare of the towns of Antouta and Ajoyani, Republica del Tejidos is a brand that produces handspun art-yarns utilizing the highest quality of alpaca fiber found in the region. Months later I was able to visit the spinners on site and assist with capacity building workshops focusing on fiber classification and selection.

My final project held the most responsibility as well as the most opportunity to learn. The project entailed designing a new collection for a brand Ruta Del Sol. The brand was created by the Ministerio de Comercio Exterior y Turismo to create economic opportunity through craft for artisans in eight cities on the northern coast of Peru. From creating visual presentations to depict the brand, to creating spec sheets for 34 products, to actually traveling to the northern coast to work hands-on with artisans, I was able to experience the project in it´s fullness. The experience was a great complement to my education, as not only was I able to apply design skills, but also present it to the Ministerio in a professional manner.

Morgan Elizabeth Cox

Morgan Elizabeth Cox, BS, Art & Design/Textile Technology
Concentration: Anni Albers
Internship Site: Polo Ralph Lauren, Company Division: Children’s Sweaters, New York, NY
Title: Children’s Sweaters – Product Development and Design Intern
 The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

Working with and assisting the VP of Design in Sweaters for all Ralph Lauren Children’s and Women’s labels.  Specific responsibilities included editing sweater graphs to be used for machine knits, color matching, providing comments on style developments, managing and shipping updated patterns and graphs to factories, and organizing tech packs and style information.

The key project I completed included:

All Ralph Lauren creative interns present their final project to a group of Senior designers and Human Resources at the end of the nine-week program.  Students are given the creative freedom to present their project in any form they choose to do so, from concept boards to illustrations, to actual product to handmade designs.  The purpose of the final project is to identify top talent by allowing students to showcase their strength and skills, and to present what they have learned about the RL aesthetic over the past few weeks.  For my project, I designed a Summer collection for infant girls 0-24 months.  My presentation included concept and inspiration images, material samples, illustrations, and hand knit garments.  I presented this to a group of Senior designers and representatives from Human Resources who then evaluated the presentation on creativity, RL Brand understanding and interpretation, and explanation of vision.

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

Brand image, maintaining label individuality whilst keeping the RL brand cohesive, and adapting women’s and men’s styles for children.

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

Attending meetings with heads of Children’s design, speaker series, and professional development workshops.  Networking with employees, vendors, and interns to gain insight into other areas of Ralph Lauren.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

I observed and learned about the development of children’s styles, safety and comfort standards, corporate organization and workflow within departments, sample fittings, and pattern grading for a large range of sizes (0M-XL).  I frequently assisted with color matching and analyzing swatches for fabric hand, feel, and tension.  I gained awareness in the specific needs of the young consumer and fully realized the creative and technical skills that are required to be a successful childrenswear designer.  The Anni Albers program focuses on the relationship of technical and creative design—I feel that this internship gave me the opportunity to see the applications of the skills I have been building while at NCSU.

Julianne DubelJulianne Dubel, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Polo Ralph Lauren, Company Division: Wholesale, Atlanta, GA
Title: Retail Management Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included: Working with a Polo Ralph Lauren Brand Manager to learn how to manage a Polo Ralph Lauren shop as part of Ralph Lauren’s wholesale business. I learned how to set a shop to brand standards and set shops throughout the state of Georgia. I also analyzed retail math and business trends to better understand the shop’s selling patterns.

The key projects I completed included: As part of my internship with Ralph Lauren, I was required to complete a final project. Upon my arrival in Atlanta, I was immediately introduced to Polo Ralph Lauren’s four new knit programs. An event for the new knit programs was coming up so I thought that it would be the perfect platform to start the final project. My partner and I created a survey to gain customer feedback on the new knit programs. We surveyed 50 consumers during our time in Atlanta. For our final project we presented customer feedback on Polo Ralph Lauren’s four new knit programs and recommendations for each new knit.

Some of the main concepts I learned were: I learned a great deal about wholesale business analysis and retail math. I learned how to look at sales numbers and set the shop to highlight products that may not have sold as well as they should have. I used brand directives to set a Polo Ralph Lauren shop to brand standards including rig execution, floor plan, concept tables, and fixture placement. Polo Ralph Lauren has BSR (Basic Stock Replenishment) items, which are brand staples, and FSR (Fashion Stock Replenishment), which are more fashionable items. BSR are key items for the brand and had to be highlighted within the shop.

I was able to visit multiple Polo Ralph Lauren shops in Belk’s throughout the state of Georgia during my internship. It really opened my eyes to the differences between stores in different markets. I was able to see the product differences between Flagship, Tier 1, Tier 2, Tier 3, Tier 4, and Icon shops.

Some of the major opportunities provided were: I was able to tour the Ralph Lauren distribution center in Greensboro, NC and Eagle Creek during orientation. It was amazing to see how deeply rooted Ralph Lauren’s distribution is in my hometown! I also heard first hand from Ralph Lauren executives about their experience with the company and the history and growth of the company. The internship in itself was an amazing opportunity for me, one I will never forget! I worked side by side with a Polo Ralph Lauren Brand Manager and was able to visit shop locations in Atlanta, Macon, Newnan, Norcross, and Kennesaw, GA.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that: I was able to work with a Ralph Lauren Brand Manager and learn the different responsibilities of a Brand Manager. I also got experience in Visual Merchandising and using brand directives to keep the shop to brand standards. I gained valuable knowledge about the Ralph Lauren brand and the company itself.

Jamie EglowsteinJamie Eglowstein, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: BCBGMAXAZRIA, Company Division: Fabric Research & Development, Los Angeles, CA
Title: Fabric Research & Development Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

I essentially helped out the department as a whole. I worked for various different managers in my department and did whatever they needed help with that specific day. Most of the miniature and larger projects are listed below under the next question. I was able to meet BCBG’s fabric vendors from around the world when they visited Corporate, and I have been introduced to many different employees in the office. I worked with fabrics all day and have strengthened my knowledge on them because of this.

The key projects I completed included:

I constantly worked on and was involved with the making of; mill cards, duplicate tags, core fabric boards, testing samples for different fabrics, books of different classifications of fabrics, measuring/weighing/testing different cuts of fabrics, organizational projects, working with headers, working in the fabric library, projects involving excel, the global tracking system, and research. I also consistently worked with different vendors as well as other similar company relationships.

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

I definitely learned about all of the hard work that goes into the making of a garment. The fabric research and development team is the stepping-stone between design and production. We make the garments that are thought up, into a realistic possibility for our producers to actually create. Picking and choosing the fabrics that will be used on every garment a company makes is a huge responsibility because there are limitations that come with each type of fabric, and you have to have a basic-advanced knowledge on all of that to be in the department. I learned how to do all of the projects listed above, and I also learned how to talk to vendors appropriately through observation. I learned that hard work and an intense interest in what you’re doing pays off immensely. Volunteering for as many opportunities as you can is also important. Everyone has to do jobs that they don’t want to; it’s going to benefit the company as a whole and you’re part of a team. Speaking of, I learned a lot about teamwork in general, and how many people have to approve certain fabrics and qualities before it can progress.

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

One of my favorite opportunities that I earned was being able to work backstage at an exclusive fashion show preview of the BCBG and Hervé Leger Spring 2015 lines at Max and Lubov Azria’s Estate in Beverly Hills. Only about eight of the thirty-something interns got to participate and it was like working at a mini fashion week show. I got to be a “dresser” for the models and it was an intense, but rewarding experience. There were a lot of important people in attendance as well and we got to work closely with Max and Lubov Azria, the owners of the company.

Another opportunity that I went out and looked for were informational interviews regarding other departments. I got the contacts of people from different departments at Corporate that sparked an interest in me, and set up interviews with them so that I could learn more about what they did for BCBG. I was the one conducting the interviews in order to get a better understanding of each department and how it contributes to the company as a whole. This was extremely beneficial for me during my time here, because not only was I getting to see other aspects of the brand, but I was also networking at the same time.

The networking I did while I was here allowed me to work at the exclusive fashion show mentioned above, as well as gave me an “in” for fashion week with BCBG. These are just some of the opportunities that I’m honored to have had!

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

This internship specifically, related to my degree because it has a lot to do with textiles. I study fashion and textile management with a concentration in brand management and marketing, and although I haven’t been doing as much marketing on a daily basis, I do get the unique opportunity to work with fabrics every single day. This has widened my “real world” knowledge on fabrics and textiles, as well as given me a better understanding of the classes I’ve taken so far at State. I use a lot of the terms that I’ve learned in class, and most of the skills that come with determining different qualities of fabrics have sharpened because of this experience.

Ann Miller FinchAnn Miller Finch, BS, FTM
Concentration: FDPM
Internship Site: Mara Hoffman, New York, NY
Title: Design Production Intern
As the Design Production Intern for Mara Hoffman, one of my main responsibilities involved working with patterns. I was responsible for copying patterns, very precisely, to be sent to outside employees who used the patterns to create samples. Everyday, I went into the Garment District where I was able to communicate with Mara Hoffman’s marker and grader, sample makers, and cutters. I was able to form a relationship with these individuals clearly relay information between them and Mara Hoffman.

With the assistance of one Public Relations employee, I was able to work with Photoshop a good amount. I have experience with Photoshop, but it was great seeing how it is used in the company and becoming more skilled with the program. One of the highlights of my internship was editing images on Photoshop which are now shown on the Mara Hoffman website. I also researched trends, as well as past collaborations and fashion shows in order to improve what the company can do in the future.

As a Fashion and Textile Management student with a concentration in Fashion Development and Product Management, this internship was a great opportunity for me. Working with patterns and Photoshop correlated to what I do in class and really improved my skills. After the months I spent learning during my internship with Mara Hoffman, I feel as though I have improved as a student in FDPM.

Mary Layson GottfriedMary Layson Gottfried, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Nation LTD, Company Division: Design, Los Angeles, CA
Title: Associate Design and Development Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

A major highlight working with Nation LTD this summer would be working directly with Jen Menchaca (Owner) and the complete design team to design the complete Spring 2015 and Fall 2015 collections. Jen and the entire design team were a joy to work with everyday and they were always willing to help me learn, no matter the area or the difficulty of the project.

The key projects I completed included:

I was given various tasks throughout the summer, from allocating sample sets to labeling and tagging samples, but the most significant task was creating the fabric swatch books. Jen started Nation LTD in the summer of 2008. Since then, Jen and the design team have used a number of colors and fabric types to diversify the company. I created fabric swatch books according the fabric type, year and season, and fabric color. For example, if Jen wanted to see a swatch from the 2009 Holiday collection, she could flip right through and find the 2009 Holiday section and choose from a variety of colors previously used.

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

The main thing I learned from working with Nation LTD was that all areas of fashion are important to every department. I am a brand management and marketing major, not a design major, and this was a design internship. However, I learned so much about design and the aspects that go into design and I really think it shaped my view on the fashion industry.

The second day of my internship I was called to a fit session (basically, the designers have designed a variety of samples and they want to make sure they fit an average person proportionally). While having a member of the staff try on the items, Jen and the designers were throwing out terms left and right that I had never heard of before.  This was because I am a brand management major, not a design major. After working with Nation LTD and working with the PR Company: THE SHOP, the showrooms and other various departments within the company, I realized how important it is to know thoroughly about each department.

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

I had the opportunity to work the photo shoot for spring 2015. This was an amazing opportunity because there were people from all areas of the company present for the shoot. I was able to meet a member of the PR team and saw how she worked social media and the aspects pertaining to their firm. My job was basically to make sure that everything went as planned and made sure everyone had what he or she needed when they needed it. My main responsibility was making sure that the photo tech knew which garments were being shot next so that she could organize them into folders based on style numbers. Everyone working the shoot was a pleasure to be around and to work with.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

My internship related to my degree in that, I am a fashion major and this internship was strictly fashion related. I worked directly with the design team at Nation LTD and through this I learned a vast amount about the different areas of fashion. Throughout my internship with Nation LTD I had daily hands-on tasks associated with the design and development of the company. I created fabric swatch books, assisted at photo shoots and fit sessions, updated trim books, allocated sample sets to various showrooms, organized sale merchandize, processed incoming inventory and much more. Working directly with the design team at Nation LTD brought into greater understanding the need for marketing expertise and focused advertising and the importance that these play in the success of a small company.

Kaitlin GrantKaitlin Grant, BS, FTM
Concentration: FDPM
Internship Site: Nordstrom, Inc., Division: Ncal, Honolulu, HI
Title: Retail Management Program Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

Shadow store manager in all jobs, such as attended weekly meetings, dealing with schedules, ordering merchandise, keeping up with department numbers, attend Intern classes led by the store manager, visit the Nordstrom Rack, learn to sell in a tourist-driven store environment, work the Early Access, Anniversary and Men’s Sales, internship final presentation project, grow meaningful connections with coworkers, co-interns and managers,attend in store rallies and events

The key projects I completed included:

Assignments from Nordstrom store manager led intern classes, attend Nordstrom NHANCED training, intern Final presentation, intern final review

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

Management skills, for example, duties required and managing a department, ordering/buying merchandise, visual merchandise, time management, customer Service, fitting Customers, Nordstrom culture

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

Chance to shadow a department manager, work men’s shoe sale, work various departments, take item of the day pictures, work social media accounts, work at the Nordstrom rack, attend weekly manager meetings, open/close departments, work the sales floor and work closely with customers, merchandise the floor, work the Early Access tents, attend in store rally’s and recognition events, create an intern presentation, attend classes led by the store manager on professional development and Nordstrom culture.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

It directly had to with my major, in that I was in the retail sector, and dealing with merchandising, dealing with customers and working with current trends. It was an absolutely amazing internship and I cannot express how much I really grew from this opportunity.

Jordan GriceJordan Grice, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Belk, Division: Private Brands, Charlotte, NC
Title: Merchandising/Product Development Intern
The Belk Internship Program provided me with many opportunities to network with Belk senior level management and learn about different aspects of the retail industry. As a merchandising intern at Belk, I was a member of the product development team for the newborn, infant, and Boys 2-20 private brands. Through this internship, I gained hands on experience that related directly to my brand management concentration. I was exposed to all aspects of product development, from concept to placement of a line. A few valuable experiences of my internship included participating in competitive shopping for spring & fall 2015 lines, using PLM to write orders for new product while communicating with vendors and buyers, and writing product descriptions that are currently on Belk.com.

A large focus of my internship was the impact of sales during the spring season for each brand. I sent out weekly selling reports every week for the five brands we developed. These reports included the best sellers, which were compiled by analyzing the year to date and weekly sell-thru in comparison to the weeks in stock of the item. Managing these reports gave insight into unique identity of each brand and gave me understanding as to what the Belk customer was looking for from these brands. Using this knowledge I developed a brand guide booklet for the J Khaki boys 2-20 and Red Camel boys 8-20 brands for my final project presentation. In conjunction with the brand guide I presented ideas on how the brand should be represented online. Not only did I learn the importance of brand identity at Belk, but also the importance of sales analysis, time management, and team work.

Lisa HoangLisa Hoang, BS, FTD
Concentration: FD
Internship Site: Marie Cordella, Division: Bridal Alterations, Raleigh, NC
Title: Design/Seamstress Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

Running the studio operations on a day to day basis, answering phone calls, scheduling clients, and tailoring a wedding dress to notes specification

The key projects I completed included:

Tailoring a number of wedding dresses without supervision and creating a website for myself

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

Basic tailoring skills, how to take in and let out a wedding dress, the best sewing techniques for different types of fabric ,how to properly hand sew, and the best way to communicate with high stressed clients

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

I was able to make a lot of connections because of who the brides were, ex. CEOs of companies, possibility of earning a paid position, working towards establishing myself as an expert seamstress

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

It taught me a lot about the design aesthetic and construction of wedding gowns. It made me more conscientious about how a dress should be made. In relation to my degree brought awareness to the best techniques to use in constructing a dress, which thoroughly affects the aesthetic of the dress as well as the fit.

Stephanie HoffStephanie Hoff, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Kohl’s Corporation, Division: Product Development – Men’s Dress Shirts & Neckwear, Menomonee Falls, WI
Title: Product Management Intern
As a Product Management Intern at Kohl’s this summer, I learned numerous things about Kohl’s the product development process, and even myself through ten weeks at their corporate headquarters, just outside of Milwaukee. I worked with the Men’s Dress Shirts and Neckwear team, supporting the “concept to customer” steps in design, sourcing, and branding for the Croft & Barrow, Apt 9, and Marc Anthony brands. Product development at Kohl’s acts as a liaison between the designers and the buyers/planners- basically building the product lines that you see in over 1000 nationwide.

Even as an intern, I was an integral part of my team. I aiding in data reports, vendor communication, and a majority of my time was spent preparing for the major milestone meetings of the summer, where our product was reviewed, edited, and finalized. All of these day-to-day tasks were great ways for me to get constant exposure to my mentor, manager, and upper level management. I also attended several meetings and shadowed other departments, which was an excellent way to get a very well rounded experience.

I completed two projects while at Kohl’s: A competitive shopping project, where I worked with another intern to cross compare other retailers in Mens wovens, as well as a final Impact Project. My impact project focused on opportunities for the slim fit, classic dress shirts for the Millennial customer. I researched the customer, current initiatives at Kohl’s, and built a product assortment for this customer based on its potential profitability.

Overall, Kohl’s and Milwaukee provided me with a fantastic summer. I was able to explore a new city, meet other interns from around the country, and gain great experience in the retail industry.

Jennie HollandJennie Holland, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: QVC, Company Division: Jewelry Department, West Chester, PA
Title: Merchandise Intern for Sterling Silver/Gemstones and 14kt Gold/Pearls
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

Creating item numbers & product orders, submitting samples to get tested to QA for quality assurance, preparing samples for Product Central to get photographed, talking with vendors via phone and email about products, mailing packages to vendors around the world, scheduling meetings with hosts, writing long descriptions for products and product details

The key projects I completed included:

Social Media project which I along with other interns had to find ways for QVC to use social media to attract new customers as well as engage their current consumer. We did this by creating the QBox, Beauty blog, ToGather and Q Ambassador Program.

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

Teamwork, quality of products value of trust amongst customers, convenience of getting product to customers, and hard work and dedication to your job.

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

Seeing how QVC operates on a daily basis over all aspects of the business. I was in the merchandising office, but also got to see host involvement, live broadcasts, online marketing, social involvement, category production, talent and even visited a distribution center. Through all these different experiences and shadowing management, I have a betting understanding of how QVC as a company runs and the daily responsibilities of every job.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

I hope to someday become a buyer for a major retail company and this internship gave me an inside look as to what I could be doing in the future. The main focus was in merchandising which was nice to see what I am studying and learning in school and put it to use in a real job. NC State has helped prepare me for the work force by showing me what to expect in a buying position. QVC has its own language and way or running, but it still relates to the main concepts of merchandising, which I learn in school. Overall, I am happy with the industry that I am in and QVC has made me realize that there is no other industry than fashion that I want to work in.

Cierra HooverCierra Hoover, BS, FTM
Concentration: FDPM
Internship Site: HanesBrands Inc., Division: Champion & C9 by Champion Athletic Wear, Winston Salem, NC
Title: Technical Designer
As a Technical Design Intern at HanesBrands, I had the opportunity to work on a variety of projects that taught me a lot about the company, as well as what it meant to be a technical designer. The technical design team works closely with the Product Development team and the Design team in New York, as well as international vendors.

While at Hanes, I worked on two main projects. The first project I worked on was analyzing the fit of women’s pants, comparing the fit differences between the Champion and C9 by Champion (Champion at Target) women’s athletic pant. I conducted fit sessions and analyzed patterns, both paper and digital. As part of this project, I researched gusset shapes and recommended the best shape to use. For the second project, I created an active wear bra library that organized the different styles and materials used to make a sports bra. This library was established to make the process of creating a sports bra faster and easier. For this project, I implemented a system that separated trims, fabric, and other information for easy access.

In addition to the two main projects, I assisted with a competitive analysis of sports bras, including Nike, Under Armour, and Lululemon. I also learned general fit knowledge, how to measure garments properly, and how to identify construction details in the specification sheets. I learned a variety of software and improved my knowledge of software that I’ve previously learned at the Wilson College of Textiles. I attended several meetings and had exposure to other departments as well, which was an excellent way to get an overview of the large company for a very well rounded experience.

Colby IrelandColby Ireland, BS, FTM
Concentration: FDPM
Internship Site: Frill, Company Division: Production, Garner, NC
Title: Product Development and Merchandising Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

My job responsibilities ranged to many different activities. I was in control of order preparation for fulfillment. This included quality assurance inspection and inventory management as well as delivery to the post office. I also was in control of marketing through the social media outlets Facebook and Pinterest. Another one of my responsibilities was to obtain product elements from local retailers such as Joanne Fabrics and Hancock’s. I participated in research and development processes including the assembly of a high waist belt featuring a large bow.

The key projects I completed included:

One of the key projects I completed was the creation of an organized and labeled inventory. I packaged and labeled over a hundred skirts so that they were ready for fulfillment including labels featuring size, style and color and stored them in boxes. Another project I completed was the planning of a fall photo shoot featuring royal blue and sangria skirts. This included making an inspiration board with potential locations, themes, models and accessories.

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

I have learned how a small business operates, how to manage inventory fulfillment independently, how to interact with customers and employees professionally and how to take initiative in the workplace.  I learned how to operate business programs such as Big Commerce and Polyvore as well as improving my skills in Microsoft Word and Excel.

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

Through this internship I gained experience with buying, production, supply chain and retail to consumer activities as well as marketing. I was provided the opportunity to have my Polyvore and inspiration board creations published on social media.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

This internship gave me knowledge in several different areas of how a fashion retail business operates including marketing, production, inventory management and inventory fulfillment. Relating to my concentration, I learned basic cut and sew production processes for garments as well as order fulfillment.

Megan JamesMegan James, BS, FTM
Concentration: FDPM
Internship Site: Kirna Zabete, Company Division: High-End Retail, New York, NY
Title: Retail/E-Commerce Intern
This summer, I was given the opportunity to intern at Kirna Zabete in both the retail and e-commerce departments. Kirna Zabete is a high-end retail boutique that carries some of the most prestigious brands in the fashion industry. Throughout the summer, I worked day-to-day with brands such as Valentino, Celine, Hermes, Stella McCartney, Dior, Alaia, and many more.

One major highlight of my job responsibilities included checking in new merchandise through censoring and ticketing each piece. In addition, I checked the daily e-commerce emails and responded when necessary. Another obligation that I held was the job of processing web orders on a program called Magento. Through Magento I also sent out national and international orders to customers. Furthermore, I was held accountable for posting new products on the website after they were photographed and set to be published. This job of posting new products allowed me to use my Photoshop skills in a new setting. Along with these tasks, I also helped by assisting on the sales floor, which allowed me to properly merchandise the store and contribute to the aesthetics and development of the Kirna Zabete products. All of the other employees who worked on the floor were certified stylists, so it was interesting to be able to work with them and see their take on fashion and merchandising.

Additionally, I was given the opportunity to assist the sales team with selecting merchandise and pulling items for Jennifer Lopez. Doing so required collaboration with her stylist, who purchased a Roland Mouret dress that Jennifer Lopez wore to her album release party on June 17. While I had watched the sales team do styling for other customers, it was interesting to see the dynamic of them working with Jennifer Lopez’s stylist to organize items for such a major celebrity. A few weeks later, Jennifer Lopez came in with her family and we were able to help her purchase a Veronica Beard blazer that she was seen wearing in Paris about a week after the purchase. It was cool seeing how she took a basic product and styled it to fit her personality.

Overall, the experience that I have had at Kirna Zabete this summer has opened my eyes to many different aspects of fashion and textile management. Being hands on in the processes of styling, e-commerce, and retail with such prestigious brands has given me experiences that will be invaluable to developing my future in this field.

Christina JaouhariChristina Jaouhari, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Anthony Rayen, Doha, Lebanon
Title: Visual Merchandising & Product Development Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

My job responsibilities included, but not limited to the re-merchandising of a menswear boutique in Doha, Lebanon. I assisted with inventory and sales from time to time. I was also responsible in the development of three garments that could be sold in the women eveningwear boutique known as Fustan, which is also located in Doha, Lebanon.

The key project I completed included:

I helped re-structure/merchandise a new boutique location of Anthony Rayen for menswear, assisted with product development, and created three garments to be sold at the women’s boutique.

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

There were arrays of concepts that I got to have first-hand experience with during the internship. For starters, research is key! Before getting the okay on anything, I had to provide research in a PowerPoint format that supported my idea.

In addition, my internship focused around the concepts of visual merchandising and product development. Also, through networking I was introduced to a popular fashion blogger in Lebanon, which I learned major concepts for marketing through social media.

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

I got to see the ins and outs of a profitable retail company from all aspects. I was able to experience the product development process. From forecasting the season’s color, designing and finally watching the last touches of the three garments I created.

Another opportunity was the ability to be part of a popular Lebanese style blog. Through connections with Anthony Rayen, I was able to meet the creator of a fashion blog in Lebanon known as StyleinBeirut. As a side job, I was able to help the blogger with her blog’s Instagram account. I was able to gain first-hand experience with social media and the major marketing techniques behind it. I learned about the major connections with well-known retail companies as well as methods to partner with retailers and designers in order to enhance social media results.

Another major opportunity I got during my internship was the ability to attend the fashion show of a number of designers during Beirut’s summer fashion week.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

The following internship related to my degree/concentration in a multitude of levels. Through this single internship I got the opportunity to witness what I have been reading in my textbooks in the actually work field. I learned how to visually merchandise products, develop garments as well as major marketing techniques when dealing with social media. I learned what it truly takes to manage a fashion driven company. Considering the company is not international and not as large as many of the retailers we learn about, I was able to experience all the aspects that go into running a successful retail company; which I enjoyed greatly!

Lauren LongLauren Long, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Fleur Boutique, North Hills, Raleigh, NC
Title: Store Manager
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

Keeping inventory and finances up to date and balanced, managing social media accounts, making schedules for other employees, and overseeing summer projects for the store and assigning tasks.

The key projects I completed included:

Organization of files, fabric, and invoices
Making our Instagram a priority & gaining a following

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

I became efficient on Quickbooks, and learned to process of tracking inventory, as well as keeping our check book balanced are we get in new shipments & send out checks

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

The opportunity to manage.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

It’s a women’s retail store so I’m surrounded by clothing brands and my key responsibility to market and manage our store and grow its success. Something my major emphasizes.

Lisa Anne MijajlovicLisa Anne Mijajlovic, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Jack Rogers, Division: Sales & Merchandising/Product Development, New York, NY
Title: Jack Rogers Summer 2014 Intern
This past summer I traveled to New York City to work as an intern for Jack Rogers. I was so excited to have been given the opportunity to work for the upscale women’s footwear company. I stayed in Columbia University’s Harmony Hall as a visiting student on the upper west side, and traveled to the Jack Roger’s company headquarters in the Flatiron District Monday through Thursday for work.

I was one of two summer interns at the company, and we collaborated well together to complete many of our daily activities. Our routine responsibilities included running errands around the city— whether it was package delivery, order pickup, or returning borrowed clothing to designers. I maintained the show room during market week; I labeled shoes, photographed and catalogued products, and rearranged items. I also was allowed to sit in on meetings with buyers from various other companies, as well as have a vote in product development meetings and discussions. Finally, I completed many “mini projects” such as creating Power Points on how various retailers displayed products online. Jack Rogers actually took my research into account on how to display their new line of nail polish online based on how other retailers did, and the product is now online in a format that I researched. There was also a lot of preparation happening for the fall 2014 photo shoot, and I attended both the photo shoot in Central Park and the still life shoot in a Brooklyn studio.

I also worked daily on the project due at the end of my time with Jack Rogers. I was tasked with creating a presentation (I chose to create a Prezi) that would describe a potential new vendor in each of the five selling regions of the country. I researched potential stores, contacted them about their products, and shared why I thought each retailer would be a good fit for the brand. I gave my presentation to the entire office at the end of the summer and received positive feedback.

What I valued most during my time in the city was being able to sit in on market meetings—meetings with buyers from companies such as Nordstrom. These were very candid snapshots of what the industry is really like, and I believe that I gained the most practical knowledge of the market from these meetings. I also appreciated the concepts I learned during the product development meetings I was allowed to sit in on. The designers appreciated my opinions on potential products and color schemes, and even let me name a shoe!

Jack Rogers is a small company, so each employee I worked with ‘wore many hats.’ This way, I learned a lot about all of the various roles in a textile company and what each worker is responsible for. I really enjoyed my time at Jack Rogers and feel that it did a wonderful job preparing me for a career in the textiles industry, as I completed many tasks for each of the different departments and learned so much about all of the various positions in the process.

Morgan MurrayMorgan Murray, BS, TT
Concentration: SCM
Internship Site: Ralph Lauren Corporation, Division: Wholesale, Raleigh, NC
Title: Retail Development Intern
Ralph Lauren is a company that was founded on elegance, innovation, and tradition. To this day it still possesses all of these characteristics, and from the beginning of the internship I was able to see just how much tradition and passion goes into the brand.   The first few days were spent in Greensboro, NC at the Distribution Center, home to a surplus of Ralph Lauren products and top of the line machinery for optimal product execution and distribution. Interns were also given the opportunity to view mock store fronts that were housed in the distribution center (DC). We quickly learned that there is a rhyme and a reason for every promotion, product placement, and floor setup.

When our time at the DC ended, we transitioned to our respective summer destinations, mine being Raleigh, NC. Michael Coleman (Brand Manager), Tyler Jackson (Fellow Intern), and I spent the days in Men’s Polo adjusting the floor set up to highlight certain Super Buy items and to heighten the product’s initial appearance to the surrounding consumers. Days were spent re-stocking, organizing, and learning what BSR (Basic Stock Replenishment) items were, and taking pride in managing the ever popular “mesh wall” that every Ralph Lauren storefront has.  The majority of the internship was spent learning the ins and outs of the business such as monitoring day-to-day sales, ensuring certain products obtained optimal focus, and as with all business, maximizing profit. Tyler and I had the opportunity to sit in on several business meetings and conference calls to learn what made the business thrive, and how to transition basic number crunching into appealing store front shops. In addition to this, we spent several days doing full store flips. We visited several shops in local malls that had begun to stray too far from company directives. The days were spent brainstorming new ways to position the items, dress and pair the rigs, and organize merchandise in a way that attracted the consumer. Most days our brand manager gave us the freedom to move product as we saw fit, and he would then give us either an approval or a helpful critique. I learned that the extreme attention to detail is what makes a Ralph Lauren shop stand out from its surrounding competitors.

During the course of the internship and in addition to daily activities, we were given the task of selecting a project related to the brand. It was rather open ended, but it allowed us the freedom to research a retail aspect that fit our interests. Tyler and I chose to focus on the classic Oxford shirt. We collaborated to create a presentation in which we broke down sales throughout the weeks, what could have affected sales, and how to further improve the sales. In the end, Tyler and I presented our project in front of company managers back at the DC in Greensboro, and we were able to analyze the progression of sales for the Oxford shirt and give the company some alternatives to heighten sales in the future.
While the internship imparted a vast amount of retail knowledge to me, the main thing that I took away from the internship was pride in the brand. Ralph Lauren is a brand based on core values and tradition, and every employee that works for them demonstrates such pride, and that is what makes the company successful. Throughout the Textile Technology major, I have learned a large amount of information from fabric structure to the supply chain, but in the end the success or failure of an item comes down to the consumer. Companies must be able to meet the demand of the consumer in a timely manner in order to keep loyal customers. Ralph Lauren taught me how to optimize time and efficiency, maximize floor space to meet company directives, and to appeal to the consumer in a way other companies do not. At Ralph Lauren, tradition, innovation, elegance, and pride are everything. I was given the opportunity to intern and learn from one of the most successful companies in the business, and all of the knowledge I have acquired will transition well into my future career in textiles.

Allison NuckolsAllison Nuckols, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Michael Kors, Division: Retail Buying, New York, NY
Title: Retail Buying Footwear Department Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

One major highlight of my internship was participating in spring 2015 market. I loved being able to see all the shoe samples created and observing the selection process. It was interesting to hear the reasoning behind every style and color selected for spring. Along with the selection process, it was exciting see the buyers set up the sample rooms with the new shoes as if it was a store in spring.

Another highlight was going to visit the stores with my supervisors. While at the stores we checked the floor and stockroom inventory. It was interesting to see how the shoe deliveries were planned and when they actually arrived in the stores. Every store was different meaning that they buyers bought differently for each which was another learning experience.

The key projects I completed included:

I had many projects throughout the internship term. Many included finding images of the shoes from a digital site called Sandbox to update their image master file. Updating these photos allowed me to become familiar with the products and helped me create monthly boards of the shoe assortments. The monthly boards I created were mainly for reference and organizational purposes.

Other projects dealt with product knowledge, which allowed me to get creative. I was given images of certain shoes that the buyers’ felt like the customer would not fully understand how to wear. However, the product knowledge was mainly for the sales associates to explain how the shoes could be styled. The projects consisted of finding images online of clothes or entire outfits that would look the best with the shoes. I did this for both lines of shoes, Michael Michael Kors and Michael Kors.

As spring 2015 market approached, I created trend reports justifying why Michael Kors should invest in certain trends and styles. The justification came from what other designers were doing which meant doing competitive shopping. I compiled images of shoe styles from other designers and created inspiration boards for the upcoming trends.

My final project also consisted of competitive shopping. I created a presentation comparing Michael Kors prices and trends to their competitors. This project helped my supervisors’ see what their competitors were doing and what Michael Kors should improve or continue to do.

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

A main concept that I learned from the buying team was that all stores are different. It is important to consider climate, store size, pervious sales, and common shoe sizes when buying. The buyers always reviewed sales from the previous week and year which was another learned concept, how to read Sales to Stock Reports.

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

Overall, Michael Kors has a great internship program. There were many opportunities for me to attend meetings and learn from the employees. Plus, all the employees that I encountered truly wanted me to learn and be involved. The Human Resources Department set up many internship meetings that not only allowed for the interns to bond but there were chances to learn about other departments, resumes, interviews, and networking.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

This internship related to my major because I learned a lot about merchandising, competitive analysis, and the fashion industry in general.

Brielle PapaliaBrielle Papalia, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Threads for Thought, Division: Corporate Office, New York, NY
Title: Corporate Office Intern

The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

Threads for Thought is a sustainable apparel company that uses organic cotton and recycled polyester to make their clothing. The company as well focuses on giving back to charity by working closely with the International Rescue Committee. This summer I was the only intern at T4T. Being the only intern in a smaller company was a great experience because I got to work side by side with the CEO’s, major sales reps, designers, and office manager. By working closely with them every day, I not only learned what it takes to run an apparel company but also a sustainable apparel company. My assignments at T4T changed mostly on a daily basis but this gave me the ability to learn the industry as a    whole. Some of my main tasks were working on switching to a new whole sale website, manage/organize the showroom, sit in on design/sales/company meetings, prepare shipments for buyers/retailers/sales reps/public relations, help manage product photos and write descriptions for the website, work with marketing coordinator on social media projects and prepare clothing donations to the IRC. Working for T4T alone was a major highlight in my life and career so far because I focused on living a sustainable healthy life and working in an environment with people who share those same beliefs could not have been better!

The key projects I completed included:

My main project for the summer was to help with the transition to a new whole sale website called NuOrder. The project was a great learning experience because I am now fully equipped on knowing how to run the website for wholesale purposes. Throughout the summer we had NuOrder staff come into our office and train us. The training allowed us to learn how to create product data sheets, upload pictures, create line sheets, complete orders for clients, and run data on what items are selling and what are not. Over all this project has taught me a tremendous amount about e-commerce, wholesale, and buying that I can take and use in the future!

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

My internship at Threads for Thought taught me a lot about communication, presentation, organization, teamwork, time management and building close relationships with coworkers. Since I was the only intern I always had tedious assignments to do throughout the day that I had to make sure were done correctly and on time. Learning to build close relationships with coworkers was key because I worked closely with everyone in the office and was helping them every day to make their job easier and for me to learn from them.

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

Some of the major opportunities I was provided with during my internship were working with the CEO’s and the different departments such as sales, the showroom, design, and marketing. I was also given the opportunity to work with the charity, the International Refugee Committee, which Threads for Thought works closely with. For the IRC I helped donate huge boxes of clothing samples and was able to go to events that the organization hosted.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

The internship related closely with my degree because I was able to apply what I have learned in my brand management and marketing classes to help me complete daily tasks and come up with better strategies/ideas for the company. Since I was not in just one department for my internship I feel that I was able to gain real world knowledge of the wide range of material that I have learned in my classes thus far. I was able to come up    with social media ideas for the T4T marketing coordinator because of projects I had worked on in classes, especially the advertising & promotions class. I also used the visual merchandising skills class information for when I organized the showroom and helped with the showroom mannequin display. I was also able to apply what I have learned about brand awareness, sales, buying, retail, and ecommerce to my internship. My degree most importantly has helped me with the communication and presentation skills that I need when working in the fashion industry and have been able to strengthen throughout my internship.

Kaitlyn ParedesKaitlyn Paredes, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Vince Camuto Men’s, Division: Marketing, New York, NY
Title: Marketing Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

The major highlights of my job responsibilities were having hands on experience that impacted the company.  Throughout the summer I was able to work on many different projects that had meaning to the company.  The projects that I took part in will continue far past my internship and have a lasting effect on the company and as an intern I found that very rewarding.  I was able to gain extensive knowledge on all areas of the business and enjoyed myself while doing so.

The key projects I completed included:

Throughout my two-month internship I completed many projects, but the largest and most important was our “.COM” project.  This weekly project consisted of many different moving parts.  First being weekly research on our brand, checking our retailers for any change in: price / picture / promotion or any sort of activity on our products [online only].  After any changes were recorded my supervisor and I would meet to analyze the report.  We would analyze it on two levels, first being the brand image.  As a team we would look at our products and how they were styled/represented on each website.  Then we examine if they are aligned with our brand image.  If we found a site did not communicate our brand image we would send suggestions, and styling cues to assist retailers in listing our products.  Finally my boss and I would look at the sell through numbers and try to understand the successes or failures of our products online.  After looking at the numbers we tried to understand the successes of our online products so that we could continue to do what works, and fix what doesn’t.

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

I learned many things during my internship, but most importantly I learned how closely each department must work to successfully run a brand.  Being involved with their marketing I learned how a company can control and maintain their brand image through relationships with their retailers.  I also learned how important consistency is in our brand image on various mediums: our own website, other retailers, the presentation of our showroom, to the quality of the clothes.

Another major concept I learned was how important it is for brands to assist the retailers.  Throughout my internship we worked to provide our retailers with product descriptions, styling cues, garment information or anything else they may need.  I found it a valuable lesson to see the relationship between the brands and retailers carrying our brand; because ultimately the brands success relies on the success of both.

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

By being able to help in many different areas I was able to take opportunities in different departments like: marketing, sales, and visual merchandising.  I was lucky to be provided with many opportunities; among some was the opportunity to direct the “.COM” report.  I became the point person and had many discussions with my boss regarding the importance of the project.   I was also able to contribute to the visual merchandising team and assist in store setups.  Throughout my internship I had a valuable learning opportunity, to learn the inner workings of Excel, a program I haven’t worked on much in school but we use everyday at work.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

This internship related to my degree in many different ways, first being able to work in the fashion industry.  As a brand management and marketing student I was able to learn a tremendous amount from my boss, the brand manager of Vince Camuto Men’s.  I was able to learn about the different parts of running a brand and how one has to manage each moving part, but still run a cohesive brand.

Audrey RinkelAudrey Rinkel, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: BCBGMAXAZRIA, Division: Social Media, Vernon, CA
Title: Social Media and Brand Management Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

Assist in the management of social networks; Blog, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube, research and identify lifestyle-related content that support the overall social media strategy, assist in content development; taking photos, scheduling content, stay current in social media trends and make recommendations on how to improve social media presence. Mall Outreach- sending artwork and copy to mall locations where BCBGMAXAZRIA stores are located in order to extend social media presence through other networks.

The key projects I completed included:

Mall outreach, social media posting schedule for Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, competitors research and creating master spreadsheet template, rewriting the Social Media Intern Guide, making recommendations based off competitor research and research and development on social media improvements for BCBG.

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

Mall outreach strategy to increase sales, tracking of post reach on social media networks, how to create a brand strategy and support retail/ecommerce sales through social media networks, how to have a successful and strong presence on social media as a brand.

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

Making recommendations on how to improve BCBGMAXAZRIA’s social media strategy, working on my own and with others to meet deadlines and complete projects, freedom to work independently, assisting the styling department with editorial photo shoots, taking my own photos for BCBGMAXAZRIA Instagram and Facebook, meeting other employees in different departments, touring the BCBG Retrospective.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

Learning how to use social media as a marketing tool, learning how to use social media as a way to increase sales, applying what I have learned in my marketing classes to social media channels as a way for BCBG to market their lifestyle brand in a unique way.

Morgan SheltonMorgan Shelton, BS, FTM
Concentration: RSCM
Internship Site: Peter Millar
Company Name: Peter Millar, Division: Headquarters, Raleigh, NC
Title: Photoshoot Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

Prep apparel for lay-down and model shots, pick up photo samples as the arrive from the warehouse in Durham, organize and control inventory of photo samples, follow pagination book and mark progress of photos, other photoshoot related assistance, assist set up for sales meetings.

The key projects I completed included:

Our project throughout the summer was to help complete the Spring 2015 line books. Each line book is compiled of a photo of every product to be offered in each color for the next season. The books are given to salesmen as they travel across the country and help their clients place orders. I also documented my experience in an online blog. Each entry described a step in the creation of the line books and included an overall description, my daily duties, photos, and what I learned.

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

How to organize a photoshoot, process to create a line book, the design timeline, merchandising and line creation.

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

Not only was the internship a great learning opportunity, but also I was working in the Peter Millar headquarters so I had the opportunity to network with a number of executives and professionals. Because Peter Millar is a small company that operates like a large company, I was able to be involved in a number of areas, not restricted to one job all summer.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

Working for an apparel company, I learned behind the scenes processes that take place in the design and production departments, and how they relate to sales and marketing. I was exposed to a number of jobs and what they entail, allowing me to further narrow down what I am in interest in doing after graduation.

Alex SimpsonAlex Simpson, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Walmart Stores, Inc., Division: Product Development- Adult Bedding, Bentonville, AR
Title: Corporate Merchandising and Replenishment Summer Intern
Interning for the world’s largest company was the experience of a lifetime.  As an intern I was placed on the adult bedding team in the product development area.  Throughout the summer I worked with the entire team including but not limited to buyers, product development managers, replenishment managers, and technical team members. My project for the summer was to conduct a category assessment on sheets.  This involved going out to about five different competitors’ and collecting data involving their in-store sheet assortment.  I analyzed a number of factors including thread count, colors/prints, fiber content, weave type, sizes, and packaging.  My main goal was to identify any voids in Walmart’s sheet assortment compared to the competition and make suggestions on how to fill these voids.  At the end of the summer I presented my project to Softlines Executive Leadership and the rest of my team.  It is a great feeling knowing that I left my team with useful information that will affect what we see in Walmart stores in the future.

Other opportunities that came with the internship program included seeing a number of executives, including the CEO, speak to all of the interns about their careers.  I was also able to attend shareholders’ week at the beginning of the summer.  This was an experience that I will never forget.  Shareholders from all around the world came to Bentonville, Arkansas to meet and discuss what is going on in the company.  These “meetings” also involved a number of performances and celebrity appearances and of course, the Walmart cheer.  Experiencing the culture of Walmart was something that I cannot even put into words.

Working for Walmart presented me with opportunities that I may not have gotten anywhere else.  My first day of work I was offered a chance to ride on a corporate plane to Myrtle Beach, SC on a buyer trip.  I was able to travel with the buyer and planner for beach towels and visit a number of Walmart stores to meet the managers and learn how they operate their beach stores.  I was also able to meet with many different people to get exposure to many different career opportunities.  Everyone was more than willing to meet with me and share their knowledge and experiences, even executive leaders.

This internship gave me exposure to a number of areas that relate to my major. I gained a better understanding of the supply chain and how a large company develops and markets their products.  In order to complete my project I had to work with different team members and use technical information to analyze competitions’ assortments related to aesthetics of textile products as well as sales and how they market their products.

Kelsey SouthwickKelsey Southwick, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Alice + Olivia, Division: Fabric Research & Development, New York, NY
Title: Fabric Research & Development Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

Some of my major responsibilities included sourcing fabric samples chosen or each product through mill name, fabric type, and article number. I also completed new fabric receiving’s, delivered fabric to the designer, and organized the received fabrics into the fabric closet. Day to day I updated the current seasons line sheet, altering  what has been dropped and added on merchandise boards, pulled certain fabrics that matched the designers description for a particular garment, and acted as a liaison between the corporate headquarters, the sample room, as well as midtown.

The key project I completed included:

As an intern at Alice + Olivia, we are given the opportunity to participate in the A+O Summer Internship Project. It is a group project made up of 5 or 6 interns all from different departments. The assignment was to develop an idea for an in-store event to create brand buzz and generate sales. The main goal of the Internship Project is to learn more about Alice + Olivia as a company, their event planning process, as well as all of the departments as they are all key players. We were given a budget to work with, and had the opportunity to meet with mentors from the company in our weekly project meetings. The final project consisted of a written proposal for the event, a press release, an e-invite, and a final presentation in front of a panel of judges. The winning group gets the reward of seeing their event come to life with the help of the retail and events team.

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

Being in the fabric department, I got to learn about how a relatively large company orders sample yardage, how much to order, and the whole process from start to finish. In this department we are constantly editing fabrics, changing the colors, texture, and so on to suit our garments, meaning we are always in contact with multiple fabric mills. Therefore through this experience I have strengthened my ability to communicate professionally and efficiently. I also learned how to use a program called Blue Cherry to create Production Orders for the fabric receiving’s. I am now more educated about the production and design process, as I was not familiar with it before.

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

Coming from a Brand Management and Marketing background, interning in the fabric department is on the opposite side of the spectrum. Since this wasn’t my field of expertise, I had the opportunity to immerse myself in the production side of a major fashion label. Doing so enabled me to become more well-rounded and knowledgeable about two major sides of a Fashion brand, do to my experience as an intern in production and my FTM courses.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

This internship has directly correlated to many courses. Starting all the way back in TT105 we learned how to identify types of fabrics (ie. jacquard, silk, lace, etc.), this skill has been extremely useful during the course of my internship. I am able to recognize fabric properties, and therefore can successfully pull fabrics for my supervisors with out any doubt. Also, all of my FTM Marketing courses made it easy for me to give useful marketing input when completing our Intern Project.

Eliza StoneEliza Stone, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Belk, Division: Private Brands Department, Charlotte, NC
Title: Product Development Intern
No day at Belk was the same! We usually began each day looking at the selling reports in our department and analyzing against last week and last year sales. Most days I attended team, vendor or style meetings where we discussed development for Spring 15 or styles that are entering the stores now. What I loved was that there were so many things going on at the same time! One minute we were tweaking developments for a new Biltmore bed, and the next we were receiving samples of our Christmas pillows to approve. Other responsibilities I participated in included competitive shopping online and in-store, addressing any quality control issues, and completing trend research. During my time at Belk I was also able to tour a packaging plant, Avery Dennison, a vendor’s cut-and-sew facilities, and Belk’s Distribution Centers and stores.

My final project involved competitive shopping for Back to School bedding and comparing and contrasting competitor’s assortment to Belk’s. I researched the price points, packaging, design, and marketing of 8 different store’s college bedding assortment. I also analyzed our Back to School sales up until the point of my presentation to see what styles and sizes were performing best.

This program really utilized all aspects of my degree. All the textile knowledge came in handy during development, and really impressed my supervisors. We also did almost all of the sourcing of our products, so the knowledge from global sourcing classes came into play there. Its a great feeling to know that your degree is preparing you for the workforce!

Anna StraughanAnna Straughan, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Walmart Stores, Inc., Division: Home and Apparel Sourcing, Bentonville, AR
Title: Corporate Merchandising Intern
As a Merchandising Intern for the largest company in the world, I quickly acclimated to all aspects of the company. This summer, I worked for the Home Technical Team and focused on utility bed pillows. I also worked along side a cross- functional team who supported the same Soft Home categories that I worked in. The other parts of the team included: sourcing, product development, buying, planning, pricing, quality, and replenishment. One of my favorite parts to the entire internship was being able to learn a little bit about all of these supporting areas that make such a big corporation run every day. Overall, the internship was very pertinent to my major. I learned a lot about merchandising, but also was able to use technical skills in my factory visits and in testing processes that included fiber identification and fiber analysis.

On a daily basis, I worked on my project independently at my desk, but also attended countless meetings. I went to the Executive Speaker Series, which was required for interns. This was a fantastic opportunity where we got to hear each Walmart Executive speak to all the interns, including every CEO. I also went to other meetings and workshops for just Walmart Merchandising Interns. Additionally, I went to meetings with my team frequently, and shadowed colleagues often. My internship was also fortunate enough to take place during the annual Shareholders Event. Through this, I was able to attend the Shareholders 2014 meeting in June. The event was held at the University of Arkansas basketball auditorium and began at 7 am Harry Connick Jr. was the host and the event featured other high-profile musical guests.

The Home Technical Team I worked for was responsible for yearly benchmarks on products in our categories, writing the specs and requirements for all products, and communicating them to various suppliers. For my summer project, I worked on the Utility Bed Pillow Benchmark. To start, I captured all utility bed pillow programs in the market (250+) through competitive shopping, and then built a matrix comparing and analyzing all programs (on size, quality level, brand of fiber, packaging, price, etc.) and included Walmart’s assortment. Then, after figuring out current trends in the market, we went on a buy trip and bought thousands of dollars of pillows from 8 retailers. We then sent the pillows to a third party testing facility that would test the pillows on technical attributes that our team had specified. They were tested for wash-ability, compression, fiberfill type (and fiber’s specs), construction, pillow shell thread count, etc.. The next part of my project was to assess my findings in the matrix and report what I found and any suggestions I had. Through serious digging and number crunching, I was able to find an area Walmart was seriously out of alignment with the rest of the market. Walmart’s “best” level pillows did not follow the size assortment of other suppliers.  Using my supporting data, I suggested how Walmart could change their assortment to be in alignment with the rest of the market. I also backed these suggestions up (with help from the Planner for the category) with financial data regarding the opportunities for increased total sales and profits with this proposed assortment change. At the end of my internship I presented my project to Walmart Senior Executives, my team, fellow interns, and other cross functional team members who supported my category.

Katelyn SuggsKatelyn Suggs, Master of Textiles
Internship Site: Springs Creative Products Group, LLC – Division: Marketing, Rock Hill, SC
Job/Internship Title: Marketing Intern
As a marketing intern at Springs Creative, I was involved in a number of key projects and events on a day-to-day basis. One of my main daily tasks was creating and developing social media content, including posts, giveaways, fabric of the week and contests, for our four major brands. In addition, I created and developed brochures, catalogs, presentations, signage and other marketing materials for the company and its retailers. Usually once a week, I attended meetings and conference calls with our retailers and licensed artists.

Some of my key projects included creating a social media campaign for the launch of the Jenny Eliza fabric collection by Jennifer Paganelli, completing a competitive analysis for Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft stores, and developing a catalog for the 2014 Hancock Fabrics District Manager conference. Over the summer, I became proficient in a number computer software programs including FileMaker, Photoshop, InDesign, and Illustrator. In addition, I furthered my skills in relation to time management and teamwork.

As a Fashion and Textile Management – Brand Management and Marketing graduate, this internship encompassed all aspects of my degree, especially in relation to advertising, social media and brand management. In addition, this internship allowed me to expand my knowledge in the field of digital printing and other technologies.

At the end of my internship, I was presented with the opportunity to become the full-time marketing coordinator for Springs Creative. Since accepting this position, I have continued to improve my knowledge and skill base in the field of textiles. Overall, I could not have asked for a better experience and work family!

Courtney TsunCourtney Tsun, BS, FTD
Concentration: TD
Internship Site: Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Division: Product Design – Retail, New York, NY
Title: Textile Design Intern
As the textile design intern at Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, I had the opportunity to work with a team of two designers that worked on projects with various companies, which allowed me to experience designing for a range of product categories and consumers. Because I worked with such a small team, I got to work very closely with the projects. My responsibilities included conducting trend research, designing original patterns with the Martha aesthetic in mind, cleaning, reworking, and recoloring artwork, and setting up presentations. In addition, I also assisted with creating a design archive for past seasons artwork.

Throughout my internship, I worked mainly on projects for potential new business partners. I helped research, create, and present collections of designs that would appeal to the company’s market, while still delivering the Martha Stewart brand to the customer. What we presented was extremely important as it needed to convince the potential partner they needed to incorporate Martha products into their assortment.  Although it was a very long, difficult process, it was a great opportunity because it forced me to work quickly and to think outside the box. Additionally, I also assisted with designs for MarthaWindow for JC Penney and bedding for the Martha Stewart Collection at Macy’s for Fall 2015. Many of the designs I worked on, including original designs, were approved to be shown to buyers and they could potentially be seen in future Martha products in a variety of different retailers!

This internship reinforced what I have been learning in my major; I was able to strengthen my CAD skills by building on what I already knew and by learning new CAD systems. This experience has allowed me to fully immerse myself in the industry and how to design and think with a brand’s aesthetic in mind. My internship at Martha Stewart was very rewarding and I am thankful that I got to be part of a team with such amazing designers.

Christina TurnerChristina Turner, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: BCBGMAXAZRIA, Division: Advertising, Vernon, CA
Title: Advertising Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

Working on styling and pieces the items from deliveries together as well as accessorizing. Being on set for photo-shoots for the BCBGMAXAZRIA website, ecommerce, and wholesale. Assisting with the creation of styling videos for their website.

The key projects I completed included:

Assisting with styling merchandise for photo-shoots. Helping on set of photo shoots. Creating style boards for each month’s delivery/collection.

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

The collections and their delivery dates for BCBGMAXAZRIA merchandise determines when a product will be released and when a photo-shoot will take place and when a collection will be sold in stores and online. A “style out” is done before any collection is presented to Lubov Azria, the chief creative officer. She will then make the decisions about which outfits, that the stylists have pieced together, that she likes best for each item in the collection.
My final journal complies day-to-day responsibilities and tasks that I completed.

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

Styling, assisting with photo-shoots, visiting and shadowing in other departments around the office, fostering strong connections and relationships with various employees.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

I gained knowledge of the marketing aspect of a fashion company. Advertising through the website and style videos, ecommerce, and website shoots relate to a possible career that my degree has already somewhat educated me about. I have taken advertising courses as well that various others that directly relate to the tasks I am completing daily.

Abby Van HornAbby Van Horn, BS, FTD
Concentration: TD
Internship Site: Ralph Lauren, Division: Home Design, New York, NY
Title: Creative Summer Intern
As a Creative Intern in Home Design, I assisted and followed direction of my Supervisor and Design Teams during the creative process. I worked with design teams on layout concepts, scanned, cleaned, and created repeats in Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator for the Fall 2015 Collection in Bedding and Fabric by the Yard departments. I built concepts for Spring 2016 with Concept designers by selecting historical and inspirational pieces from the archives. I completed Ralph Lauren Paint projects for the Senior Vice President of Home Design. I attended design brainstorming and vendor meetings with teams to find new qualities and ideas to add diversity to lines. I maintained and inventoried samples for upcoming Spring 2015 Showroom launched in August 2014. This was my second summer internship with Ralph Lauren’s Home Design as I was one of two interns Summer 2013.

For my Creative Intern project, I created two concepts to expand the Ralph Lauren Home and RL Gang collections. This was an area of the Home Design department I saw an opportunity to grow into a children’s bedding collection. I got to the experience the entire design process from start to finish (concept, design, presentation) and had the opportunity to work with all the Home design teams as well as the RL Gang marketing team and Men’s Polo knit designers throughout the project.  I received a greater knowledge of the Ralph Lauren aesthetic and showcased my personal interpretation of the RL aesthetic through this project.

I gained a more in depth knowledge of how the design process is carried out in a large company, how many people’s hands one design passes through to completion. Collaboration and communication are vital components to a department to ensure they are meeting the needs of their customers, but maintaining the integrity of the brand’s aesthetic. My supervisor and the design teams I worked with this summer were mentors and helped me grow not only as a designer, but as a person. Because of this internship, I have found a passion for Home Textiles and can become a more diverse designer by creating with a different end product in mind.

Alexis WilliamsAlexis Williams, BS, FTM
Concentration: TBMM
Internship Site: Cosmopolitan Magazine, Division: Fashion Closet, New York, NY
Title: Fashion Intern
The major highlights of my job responsibilities included:

Every day that I went into the office, I was required to check clothes in and out that had come in from showrooms, PR companies, and other magazines; I then had to take pictures and make invoices. The interns were in charge of making sure all clothes coming in and leaving the closet were properly documented. Each day consisted of many “runs” where I would have to go out all over Manhattan to pick up clothes needed immediately for photo-shoots.

The key projects I completed included:

The key project that I completed was a guide to the fashion closet that described in complete detail the parts that had to be done in order to make the magazine. Included were all the tasks that I had to complete on a day-to-day basis along with pictures of tasks that had to be completed.

Some of the main concepts I learned were:

The main things that I learned while working at Cosmopolitan Magazine were how to work as a team, how to take responsibility for each task, where certain designer brands came from, and how to verbally communicate with people at outside sources and people of higher standing at the magazine.

Some of the major opportunities provided were:

While I was at Cosmopolitan, every Tuesday the magazine provided an hour-long meeting for interns called CosmoU. Each week, a different area of the magazine (marketing, promotions, etc) would meet with us about what their area of the magazine did and how they contributed to each issue. Also, the interns were able to go participate in events that were held at the Hearst Tower. Through this, we got to see many important people speak about their success.

This internship related to my degree/concentration in that:

This internship related to my degree and concentration because it was not only fashion oriented, but it also allowed me to grow a better understanding of certain brands and the PR companies that they are associated with. I was able to experience first hand where these companies were located and how the magazine was able to communicate with them in order to borrow certain styles and looks. After watching runway shows all my life, it was really awesome to see the newest runway pieces from brands such as Chanel, Moschino, and Dior, in the office not too long after they appeared in the shows.