The Benefits of A Summer Internship

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As globalization continues at a rapid pace, the competition for jobs continues to increase as well. In this day and age you no longer just have to be more qualified than the person sitting next to you, you have to be more qualified than the countless others all around the world. This is where the role of the internship becomes more crucial than ever.

Employers increasingly want to see previous experience in their new fresh out of college hires. Seems like an impossible situation right? Well not if you’re willing to get out their and “pound the pavement”, metaphorically or otherwise. Internships not only allow you to develop your skills, they also allow you to build your professional network, build your confidence, and perhaps most importantly, they allow you to take your career plan out for a test drive. Put in 3 or so months, and find out if that “dream job”, is really a dream, for you.

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This summer I was fortunate enough to intern as The Press Release Manager for the startup fine jewelry company, JEWELv:

JEWELv is not just another jewelry shopping site; it’s a shopping experience where you can create the perfect piece of custom fine jewelry each and every time. At JEWELv, we want to help create lasting memories and lasting impressions with unique pieces that you have the opportunity to design yourself. We believe the gift of jewelry should be as individual as the person it is designed for, and our state of the art technology allows you to make that happen.  The average jewelry store limits you to the inventory they have selected.  At JEWELv our goal is not to sell you a piece of jewelry out of the case, but to help you create something unique for that special person or special occasion. We craft gifts to be treasured for decades to come by those near and dear to you. From stories that start with once upon a time all the way to happily ever after, JEWELv provides the perfect jewelry pieces for every moment in between.”

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I cannot begin to describe how formative, and enriching this internship was for me. I’ve known that luxury PR was my passion for quite a while(I have my Public Relations certification from PRISM, and served as PR Manager for the 35th Annual GCC Fashion Show), but this position really cemented that passion. As the name implies, I was in charge of press releases for the company, weekly blog posts, and influencer/media outreach and collaboration. Interning for a startup was an amazing experience because I was one of a term of nine core employees; I reported directly to the CEO.Working for JEWELv not only gave me PR experience, but experience in luxury retail, and working with startups. It was invaluable.

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While I no longer work for JEWELv, I credit them for where I am today. If not for the skills and experience I received under their employment, I would have never landed my current Public Relations internship position with The Lingerie Lab, which I am working diligently day and night to transition into my permanent dream position. Yeah, PR Manager for a luxury lingerie company is my dream position, trivia fact about me.

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To sum things up, if you’re currently in college, or even a recent college graduate, INTERN! Intern now, intern a lot, and intern passionately and ferociously. Be hungry for the experience, and personal and professional development. Employers increasingly view their internship programs as the best path for hiring new entry level candidates.

 

Internship at WWD JAPAN

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My name is on a Japanese fashion magazine “FASHION NEWS” !

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What happened to me? The answer is what I did during the summer vacation.

KONNICHIWA (hello)! I am Asahi, an international student from Japan.

My major is fashion merchandising, and I interned at INFAS publications for two and a half months. The company publishes WWD JAPAN, which is a weekly paper, although WWD is a daily paper in the United States, and FASHION NEWS, a collection magazine published soon after each season collection ended. I belonged to the editor division and worked for both magazines. My office hours were about seven hours a day, five days a week.

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My daily routine:

  • Cleaning a room for the editorial department when other employees go to a different meeting room.
  • Answering telephones and connecting editors. Most phone calls were from the PRs of companies including Prada Japan, Chloe Japan, Dior Japan or sometimes from designers.
  • Opening the mail (About 200 envelopes a day!) and distributing them to each employee.
  • Making a schedule sheet with Excel for the upcoming events and exhibitions.
  • Picking garments that will be used in a shooting or returning them to each brand.
  • Putting the back numbers of WWD JAPAN in order.

They may seem to be chores, but I could be in the office with editors who write articles for WWD JAPAN (which I love reading!) and I was excited about doing my tasks that could help them.

Men’s fashion week in Paris, Milan, London and Florence was held from end of June to first of July. Kaname Murakami, the editor in chief of FASHION NEWS, came back to the office from his business trip for the fashion shows and asked me to help to make the 2014 S/S menswear issue.

My job for the FASHION NEWS was…

1) Making phone calls to about 150 brands’ PRs to ask whether they would cooperate with us and answer some questions about the shows or not.

2) Mailing surveys to each PR, including some brands’ PRs whose companies are located in London.

3) Collecting the surveys from PRs by the due date.

4) Putting the survey answers on a server as well as printing them, so all the editors in the office could see them.

5) Calling some PRs who had not sent back the surveys. I called them several days before the due date to urge them to mail to me as soon as possible because their brands could not be in the magazine if they missed the date.

6) Making the content pages below. In this task, I needed to be careful that I spelled everything right!

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7) Making the reference pages, including the brands’ names and telephone numbers of the customer centers and PRs.

During these jobs, I continued working for WWD JAPAN.

Finally, I finished all my jobs for FASHION NEWS, and my name is on it! I was so surprised! My favorite part about the internship was meeting the editors who work for WWD, and being able to keep in touch with them. If you are interested in an industry, I recommend you try to intern with people working in the real world. You will have a lot of good opportunities! I am very proud of my experience.

If you want to read these magazines, WWD japan or Fashion News, let me know!