Tag Archives: interns

Feb10

Creating Diverse Internship Programs

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At colleges and universities across the nation, spring semester has been underway for a few weeks. With the arrival of spring semester comes the onset of employers looking to fill positions for their summer internship programs. As the job market and college student demographics are changing, so should your internship programs. Let’s face it, there is a 60 percent chance that the intern you hire today will be your entry-level employee tomorrow.

We have set aside some tips and strategies for your internship program to mirror the diverse marketplace, which in turn may increase your chance of creating a more diverse work environment.

Research

Under the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) act, there are certain requirements companies and employers are suppose to fulfill based on diversity initiatives. However, with those requirements come the task of hiring prospective interns just to check certain boxes and to satisfy their audits. Appropriate research should be done to track where diverse intern applicants are coming form. For example, based on thorough research, a company may find they receive more diverse applicants at a particular conference oppose to the average career fair.

Go Beyond Traditional Recruiting Methods

While tradition is always great, sometimes it is necessary to break out of the box and develop new ways of recruiting. Partner with different career development companies, like us, that may have greater access to diverse talent. Break away from the old sit behind the table, college fair way of recruiting and embrace contests and social media. If you’re looking for a social media intern, maybe create a contest about creating a social media plan for one of the company’s clients and/or products. You can reach a large pool of diverse students that way and see their relevant skills all at once.

Establish a Mentorship Program

Partner with local high schools to establish a mentorship program. (Yes, I said high school). Starting early is an excellent way to increase and foster greater diversity. At the high school level, your company can allow juniors and seniors to shadow employers for a three-week time frame in the summer and throughout the school year build rapport with the particular employer. This way, by the time the student enters college there is a greater possibility that they are interested in your company and may even tell their college roommate or friend.

Along with these tips, check out our customized internship program service where Marc Scoleri provides employers with an assessment and evaluation of the business to supply your internship program needs.

Do you have a diverse internship program? Feel free to comment and chime in our tips and strategies.

Nov13

Interview with Rena Tom of Makeshift Society

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Some people may know Rena Tom as a business strategist consulting with product designers, while many others know her as the Founder of Makeshift Society San Francisco… and now Makeshift Society Brooklyn.

Makeshift Society is a clubhouse for creative freelancers and a space to sustain low-growth businesses. With the “make, learn, teach and think” motto at the core of the space, Rena Tom talks with Creative Interns about how she’s bringing that motto to Brooklyn.

Creative Interns: What made you create Makeshift society in San Francisco?

Rena Tom: I was doing consulting work, some in-person and some over the phone. I was having trouble finding a place to work, so I started renting space at Workshop during the daytime hours when no one was there. While renting the space, I was sitting there basically by myself. Over time, I found myself at the coffee shop more and more just to be around people.

I started talking to my friends who were independent workers, bloggers and designers and I realized we were all in the same boat (wanting to engage with others while working). So I decided I would make a little office space for people and the more people I talked to, the more people wanted to be involved with the space. And so it evolved into a working space – Makeshift Society.

makeshift

CI: Why did you decide to expand to Brooklyn?

RT: As soon as we opened in San Francisco, we were getting a lot of requests all over the country saying this is a great idea and wishing we were in their city. My friend, Bryan Boyer, was moving to New York and was interested in developing another Makeshift location.

CI: Do you feel Makeshift Society Brooklyn will contribute to the growing creative digital space that is happening in Brooklyn?

RT: Definitely! That’s the reason why we thought it would be ideal to have our second space in Brooklyn – sort of a hub for the east coast. Brooklyn has an enormously large creative population, especially in the freelance side and it does have a good tie to San Francisco. We are there for the independent consultants and entrepreneurs in Brooklyn – designers who want to remain freelance; photographers who get hired to take product shots; or copywriters who are brought in to work on a collection.

CI: Will there be opportunities to work directly with Makeshift Society Brooklyn?

RT: There will be employees on site and we would like to take on interns in marketing, event planning and programming. Beyond that, we are leaving a lot of it up to the members and the companies we will be partnering with.

CI: When can emerging creatives expect to use the Brooklyn space?

RT: We are depending on the completed construction of the site, but first quarter of 2014 is our goal.

For more about Makeshift Society Brooklyn, connect with them on twitter: @MakeshiftSocBK

 

Nov07

Intern Spotlight: Callia Hargrove

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Name: Callia Hargrove

Intern Position Title: Digital/Social Media Intern

Company Name: Ralph Lauren

Location: New York

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

I’m a twenty-year-old native New Yorker. I live in Manhattan and attend the Fashion Institute of Technology. I’m currently interning in the social media department at Ralph Lauren. This is my fourth internship and so far, it’s one of the most exciting/interesting/challenging!

Can you tell us the steps you took to land this internship?

I got this internship through sheer luck. One of my old bosses at Of a Kind knew someone in the social media department at Ralph Lauren who was looking for an intern, and she recommended me. From there I went through two interviews and I started in September.

What attracted you to this company?

I love how classic Ralph Lauren is. I grew up wearing Ralph Lauren and it’s so great to have the opportunity to intern at a place with so much history. It’s also great that Ralph Lauren is one of the first companies that I’ve interned at that my family recognizes. To them, it’s like a little symbol that I’m making it.

What skills are you learning at this internship?

So many skills. This is my first internship in social media so I sort of went in a little blind. I was pretty well-versed on all of the different social channels but I was missing the connection between ideas and executions. I’m learning a lot about how to translate one idea into something that can live on all of the different social media platforms.

What has been a highlight so far?

Definitely helping out with Ralph Lauren’s involvement in the 2014 Olympics. I got to really lend some of my ideas to what’s coming up in terms of social, and it was very exciting to be involved with something so iconic.

Most challenging part?

To me the most challenging thing in all of my internships has been balancing my schedule. Along with interning, I have a part-time job at a photography museum and I go to school full-time. I literally have one day off a week. Sometimes it can be hard to find time to breathe, but in order to get where I want to be, I know that I have to hustle.

Could you describe what a typical day is like for you as an intern?

Most days in the social media department start off with checking Ralph Lauren’s various social channels (Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, etc.). I’m mainly responsible for Pinterest so I check in with the team to see what we’re trying to achieve for the day and what needs to be pinned. Afterwards, we might have a brainstorm for a new initiative or continue working on a plan that’s almost in the execution stage. Social media is constantly changing, so each day brings something new.

Give us one word to describe your workplace environment:

Inspiring. Everyone on the social media team is great on their own, but seeing all of us come together and merge our ideas to create something that I can watch live on our social channels is so rewarding.

What advice would you give to someone just starting to look for an internship?

I would say don’t let a “no” stop you. I’ve probably applied to over 50 internships and gotten offered less than 10. Don’t be afraid of rejection. Yolo is my motto and I’m always putting myself out there for things. In the fashion industry, nothing worth having comes easy, so be ready to work hard and make connections. Once you get that internship, all of your hard work will be worth it.

What is your dream job?

This changes every week. I know that I want to work in fashion in an area that combines writing and marketing, but I’m just not sure what that job looks like exactly. Right now I’m thinking a Digital Market Editor, but tomorrow I’ll probably have a different answer.

Oct31

Job-hunting Nightmares

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Job-hunting can be daunting, even frightening. While emerging creatives may have encountered their own scares today, here is a list of “job-hunting nightmares” we’re releasing into the universe this Halloween – don’t read them alone…

  1. Realizing your dream job is with your former internship employer – yes, the internship employer that you never stayed in contact with
  2. Creating a video reel of your amazing work, sending the reel out to prospective employers and then realizing the reel video has a glitch
  3. Finding a job, spending time crafting the perfect cover letter and then realizing the job posting has been taken down
  4. Realizing a job prospect went to your spam mail and now it’s just too late
  5. Interviewing for a job, thinking you nailed the interview and then getting the “we’ve filled the positon” notice
  6. Online job applications and systems that seem only to exist to cause job seekers even more pain
  7. Months of applying, networking and no leads
  8. The well known recruiter who says “you’re perfect for the job” and then suddenly disappears
  9. The reference that never really refers you (be careful of who you ask)
  10. You’re current employer finds out your on the job search before you even give notice (yikes)

Can you think of any other job-hunting nightmares emerging creative professionals may encounter? 

Oct14

What My College and Grad School Degrees Didn’t Teach Me

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It has been officially five months since I completed my Masters program and two years since I completed my undergraduate career. Within these last two years, I learned things about myself, my career and future that a college or grad school degree couldn’t teach me. The courses of life are ones you have to sign up and pass on your own.

Progress is a process
I’ve heard this cliché over and over, but the past two years it has rung louder than ever. Trust, that wherever you are in your life it is exactly where you’re suppose to be. The Dalai Lama said it best, “I find light in the darkest of days, and focus in the brightest. I do not judge the universe.”

Always educate yourself
After completing my Master’s thesis in May 2013 I didn’t want to touch another communication ethics book or social media journal article for months. I knew that wouldn’t last for long. Every week, I’m checking the latest blogs for industry trends and searching what book I can get my hand on next (Now reading: The Personal Touch: What You Really Need to Succeed in Today’s Fast-Paced Business World by Terrie Williams). If you are no longer in school, you still need to educate yourself and continue to perfect your skills. Complacency in the global marketplace is not an option.

Keep Family close
My father has had a constant battle with his health for years, but over the last two it has become progressively worse. This alone has taught me to keep family close. We often get so busy or even caught up with “our circle” that we tend to see family only on big occasions – weddings, reunions, birthdays, etc. The saying “family over everything” has always meant so much to me, but even more within the last two years.

Travel
A wise person once told me, “the best education is seeing two worlds and comparing it.” See the world and all it’s wonders. The last two years I embarked on trips to Cozumel, Mexico, Labadee, Haiti, Toronto, DR and some american cities learning their culture and tasting their food — simply experiencing life outside of my home in Brooklyn. Emerging creatives, now is the time to travel and see the world – the time when we have less obligations (children, etc). I can’t wait for the places I’ll visit in the coming years. #LiveLoveTravel

Be of service
As young professionals and creatives, we often get so caught up in our career journey that we forget to serve others. Whatever community or group you decide to serve is up to you. “Your service to others is the rent you pay while on earth.” As you continue to climb the ladder of greatness, take others with you.

Oct08

Success Story: Landing The Job

I’m sure all of you have goals of getting hired after completing an internship. For many students in such a competitive industry, it’s hard to do. But this passionate and hardworking graduate managed to go from a Style Guru intern to Social Media Director at CollegeFashionista. Meet Sammy Luterbach and find out how she did it.

 

Sammy1Tell us a bit about yourself.

Growing up, I always knew I wanted to move to New York City and work in fashion. To skip over a lot of blood, sweat and tears and make a long story short, I did just that. Along the way, I discovered my love for cats, leopard print, and legal pads.

How did you first land your internship with CollegeFashionista?

Before I started school at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, I made a day trip to the city with friends to try to find a job. A boutique I wanted to work at wasn’t hiring, but one of the employees there wrote for CollegeFashionista. She asked to take my friend’s photo for the site, and I was immediately intrigued. I asked her about CollegeFashionista and checked it out the second I was near a computer (pre-iPhone; yikes!).

After finding out this was an online internship I could be a part of, I emailed Amy Levin, founder of CollegeFashionista, directly asking how I could get involved. We set up a phone interview, and the rest is history. I became a Style Guru one month after the site was launched four years ago.

What attracted you to this company?

I love fashion, and I love writing, so the fact that CollegeFashionista combined both initially attracted me to the company. The longer I worked and the more CollegeFashionista expanded though, I loved that I didn’t have to be in New York City to feel connected to the industry. By interning for CollegeFashionista, I could be in college in the middle of Wisconsin, work from my apartment and be a part of a fashion movement with other people like me.

What skills did you learn during your internship?

I always like writing, but CollegeFashionista helped me explore more of a journalistic approach. Although I’m not a strong photographer, I definitely learned more about photography and became better throughout the years. Most importantly for me, I learned all about social media. I specifically remember the conversation years ago where Amy convinced me to sign up for Twitter! On top of that, I improved my leadership skills, developed more of a business mind and even did some event planning. Through everything I did with CollegeFashionista, I gained confidence and a voice.

How long did you intern with CollegeFashionista?

Almost four years! I began in September of 2009 as a Style Guru and worked continuously until I moved to New York and started working for the company this past July.

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What was the most valuable thing you took from your internship experience?

Be genuine. There are so many people who will be catty, competitive and show-offy to fight to the top, but that will only get them so far. Hard work and passion will get you to where you need to be. Also, never expect that you think you know it all. Before CollegeFashionista, I thought I wanted to be a designer! This internship helped me learn otherwise.

How did you turn your internship into a job?

Turning my internship into a job at CollegeFashionista wasn’t something I planned for, although I definitely dreamed about it! I was the first employee to be hired by the Levin family, so I didn’t have anyone to emulate. I just fully dedicated myself to CollegeFashionista and always asked for more work. I tried to go above and beyond what was asked of me. I became an important part of the team through my work and passion for the company.

What role do you have within the company now?

I am the Social Media Director and Editorial Assistant. I manage all of CollegeFashionista’s social media platforms, operate the newsletter, help with special features on the website and work with the Head Style Gurus to spread the word about CollegeFashionista on campuses all over. Plus, there are always extra projects that come up on a daily basis depending on what’s happening in the office and on the site!

Give us one word to describe your workplace environment.

Dynamic. Everyday is different in the office, but it’s always fast-paced and full of energy. We work extremely hard but also manage to find the time for candy breaks and fun music.

What advice do you have for other interns?

Be genuine, work really hard and always say yes – you’ll figure out how to get it all done.

Oct07

Fall Season = New Beginnings

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The cool air outside is the tantalizing warning that fall is rapidly approaching. With the fall season comes new beginnings: the new school year, internships, jobs and more. This read is for the young professional looking to turn this fall into a way to jump-start their personal journey and professional path.

Attend events

Feeling like your network is getting a little stale? Make it your goal for the fall to attend at least three events per month to expand who is in your network. Let others besides those in your circle know your work ethic.

Pick up a great self/professional development book

Head to your nearest bookstore and pick up a self or professional development book to inspire you or to take your particular skills from level five to level ten. The Start-Up of You by Reid Hoffman and Ben Casnocha is a great blueprint that allows you to adapt to the world of work and to transform your career. Produced By Faith by Devon Franklin is a phenomenal book promoting how to stay grounded in your faith and beliefs while accelerating in your career.

Have Fun

As a young emerging professional, sometimes we forget the most important thing – to have fun. This is your 20s (your most crucial years) and these are the times where exploring is most necessary. Create a bucket list and check things off. Travel to new places. While your professional life is important, don’t forget about what’s most important – your personal growth.

Oct01

Intern Spotlight: Taylor Hicks

Taylor HicksName: Taylor Hicks

Intern Position Title: Styling Intern

Company Name: Emily Current and Meritt Elliott (MAUDE)

Location: Los Angeles, California

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

My name is Taylor Hicks. I am currently 18 years old and I live in Los Angeles, California. I attend the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, where I major in Merchandise Marketing. I was also recently chosen to be the Fashion Director of FIDM’s student-run magazine FIDM MODE. Finally, I have had four amazing internships in the past year at companies such as Emily Current and Meritt Elliott, Jimmy Choo, WhoWhatWear, and Teen Vogue.

 

Can you tell us the steps you took to land this internship?

I am currently interning with celebrity stylists and designers Emily Current and Meritt Elliott. I landed this internship by essentially doing my research and frequently following up. I knew I had a deep interest in celebrity styling and therefore, wanted to gain valuable experience by interning for major stylists. I found Emily and Meritt’s official website and after doing a little digging, I came across a contact email for inquiries. I immediately sent an email to the contact, explaining my previous experiences and interest in styling. I had to follow up at least two times before I received a response. Once I heard back, I was given an interview a week later and got the internship on the spot! I have been interning for them ever since.

What attracted you to this company?

I have always had a passion for pop culture and styling for as long as I can remember. Also, I have been a massive fan and admirer of Emily and Meritt’s work with their denim line Current/Elliott and celebrity clients like Emma Roberts and Mandy Moore. That said, it was a no-brainer when it came time to decide which celebrity stylists I was most interested in interning for. Today, Emily and Meritt have a total of six celebrity clients, including Jessica Alba, Emma Roberts, Sophia Bush, Mandy Moore, Ashley Tisdale, and Nikki Reed. Their styling aesthetic greatly represents the young, experimental lady who is seen by many as a true trendsetter, which is exactly where my heart lies when it comes to celebrity styling.

What skills are you learning at this internship?

There are an abundance of skills that I have learned from interning for Emily Current and Meritt Elliott, which include time management, networking, project management, decision-making, etc. The skills that my internship has taught me are invaluable and have helped me grow in my professional career by allowing me to dive head first into the world of styling and maneuver my way through every situation.

What has been a highlight so far?

The highlight of my internship has been all of the individuals who I am fortunate enough to work with on a daily basis. From Emily and Meritt’s team and their celebrity clientele to the employees at the public relations companies; each of them have made my internship more incredible and educational. I pinch myself every single day because I have been given the opportunity to work with people who believe in me and trust me while allowing me to live out my dreams.

Most challenging part?

The most challenging part of my internship has to be accepting the fact that nothing is ever going to be perfect and that obstacles and set-backs are inevitable. I tend to be a perfectionist and I am a tad bit OCD when it comes to organization and execution so it has definitely been a challenge to accept that I will make mistakes and there are always problems. However, I have come to learn that being a stylist is so much more than just creating looks because a large aspect of the career is problem-solving, which is a challenge in its own right.

Could you describe what a typical day is like for you as an intern?

A typical day for me as an intern is insanely busy and unpredictable, which I love. I usually begin my day at the studio, organizing all of the racks of clothes to be set up for a fitting or returned to PR companies. After I have returned all of the clothes and accessories to PR companies, I head back to the studio to get prepared for pick-ups of new clothes and accessories for the next fitting. Then, there are some days when we have fittings or photo shoots and my day is completely spent preparing for those or working at them. The most exciting part of my internship are the fittings and photo shoots because everything is so hands-on and in the moment. These two events are when I am able to learn the most and see how my bosses work their magic.

Give us one word to describe your workplace environment:

Stimulating.

What advice would you give to someone just starting to look for an internship?

The best advice that I can give to someone that is just starting to look for an internship is to have a deep passion for what you’re doing and to never stop trying. You will always have to follow up with people because of their busy schedules and not everyone is going to tell you ‘yes.’ However, this should never stop you from chasing after your dreams because I know so many people who are living proof that ambition and hard work can take you wherever you want to go. Also, kindness is always in style and it will take you far in life because people who are nice are always remembered.

What is your dream job?

My dream job is to be in styling, whether it’s celebrity styling, editorial, or being a fashion director for a major department store. I love merchandise and that is exactly what I want my career to surround itself around. Ultimately, I want a career that allows me to indulge myself in every aspect of fashion and I think working at a magazine like Teen Vogue or a department store like Bloomingdale’s could allow for that.

Sep17

The NEW Purpose of Fashion

Verneda White HUMAN INTONATIONVerneda Adele White is the Founder and Creative Director of HUMAN INTONATION, a charity-driven, premium apparel brand that uses fashion as a platform to raise awareness for social and human rights issues like HIV/AIDS prevention, rebuilding New Orleans and educating children in Darfur. Creative Interns has the story of how an emerging creative talent became a dedicated entrepreneur by turning her single vision into “The NEW Purpose of Fashion”.

Creative Interns: What inspired Human Intonation?

Verneda White: Two separate events that happened close together drove the development of Human Intonation – my family’s experience with the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in August 2005 and the death of my close first cousin to AIDS in February 2006. I first started designing T-shirts for Hands on New Orleans, our longest existing non-profit partnership, to promote volunteerism in the Gulf Coast following the hurricane. I wanted to do something constructive with my energy and create a positive project out of my experiences that would be beneficial to others. Today we support four causes in total.

CI: As the founder and creative director of Human Intonation, where do your creative ideas flow from?

VW: Inspiration comes from a combination of things from the missions of our non-profit partners to researching new colors and textures. My first objective is to create quality garments with a creative design that carries the message of the causes we support into everyday life: how can we create a call to action or start a conversation about these issues? I also graduated from Cornell University with a Bachelor of Science in Textile and Apparel Management, and some of my creative ideas stemmed from there in terms of garment construction and sourcing organic and environmentally sustainable fabrics.

CI: After just recently celebrating your five-year anniversary, what would you attribute the success of your business to?

VW: 99 percent is having the sheer determination to make it happen. As a small business owner and social entrepreneur, you have to be determined to do things most people aren’t willing to do. The other 1 percent I would have to say is really knowing your business – trial and error and taking those lessons learned in order to do things differently next time. Some of the things I am doing now were not on my radar five years ago. For example, if you asked me five years ago if I envisioned writing my own blog for the Huffington Post or speaking to high school students across Brooklyn I would have told you no.

CI: What was your most recent event/endeavor? What do you hope to do next?

VW: On August 19, 2013 we hosted our five year anniversary celebration, “For the Love of Life: Human Intonation”, where we presented our new collection of women and men t-shirts, tank tops, and dresses from which we donate 20 percent of the proceeds from each sale to our non-profit partners. After the event we were able to highlight the evolution of Human Intonation over five years and what is next for the brand.

I want to focus more on our community programs and expand on our workshops for teens and adults. On our business side, I want to continue to grow our wholesale partnerships. What is unique about our brand is that we have created our own T-shirts/wholesale line where we can produce the t-shirts for any occasion (we’ve created special edition shirts for the National Black Leadership Commission on AIDS and others). This piece of our business really helps us to move forward and expand.

CI: What advice would you give to emerging creative talent?

VW: First and foremost, learning your craft is key and it will help you to successfully execute. You need to be able to provide value to your customers and create something that is memorable.

Secondly, take your time. Sometimes I get so passionate about what I’m doing that I get ahead of myself and it has not been beneficial for me or our team. The opportunity for greatness will always be there, so take your time.

 

To support Human Intonation, shop www.humanintonation.com. You also have the option of donating directly to the organization’s non-profit partners

Sep12

Time Management 101

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Ok seriously, your day-to-day tasks have become overbearing and you’re beginning to feel like you have no time to breathe (that may be a bit of a problem). It is time, to refocus your energy and truly practice real time management so you’re not feeling the dreaded “burn-out”.

Plan each day

Plan out your day the night before and that will help you feel more control of your life. Write a to-do list, putting only the most important tasks at the top. On your to-do list include the time of when each task should be completed to avoid spending too much time on a task and to minimize last-minute rushes.

Delegate

Take a look at your to-do list and consider a task that you possibly can pass to someone else or even seek help. The best projects weren’t built by one individual.

Limit distractions

Block out time on your calendar to do big projects – like an analyst for your boss or a major term paper. During that time, turn off your phone, iPad, email and focus solely on the project. Yes at work you can put on an automated message on your phone and email to get a large project done on time.

Evaluate how you’re spending your time

Try something different: Keep a diary of everything you do for three days to determine how you’re spending your time. Spending three hours surfing the Internet with no purpose? Maybe take one of those hours to exercise, another to hang out with family or friends. Your three-day diary track will show you how you need to spend your time more wisely.

Create a healthy environment

Get plenty of sleep, exercise regularly and have a healthy diet. A healthy lifestyle will improve your focus and concentration, which helps to improve your efficiency so that you can complete your work in a reasonable time.