I'm sure some of you might wonder what is must be like to be a fashion student. Fashion students are always seen as go-getters, and are often living or taking internships in glamorous cities.
Now that I am living in New York and finishing out my senior year at the Fashion Institute of Technology, I have discovered the many ways being a "student" and being "a fashion student" are two completely different things.
Here are four reasons why I have come to that conclusion:
At a normal internship (in any other industry), you go in, do the bitch work, smile and hope you learn a few things along the way. In the fashion industry, forget thinking your internship will even be close to that simple. Nope: You show up, look cute, talk cute, act cute, while still proving you do have a brain. Since you're used to the hustle, you probably have the most valuable set of street smarts a person could posses.
Yes, it's true you get coffee like in "The Devil Wears Prada," but I'm not talking about that. I'm talking about you proving that you have a brain, along with common sense (since people assume you don't being in the industry).
Any other industry automatically assumes you're qualified. That's not the case if you're in the fashion industry. You must prove you have a brain every day while also keeping your outfit, manners, graciousness and make-up all in tact.
2. Finding A Job
For starters, you better be open to New York City or Los Angeles, especially for entry-level positions. Sure, there are big name companies with offices in smaller cities, but if you are seriously devoted to the industry, you will probably find yourself on opposite ends of the country in New York City or Los Angeles fighting for a job. So, you better learn how to be alone; chances are you will be moving to a brand new city.
The first thing you say to the guy you're chatting up at the bar is that you're in fashion school. His eyes light up like you basically gave him to green light into your pants. He may even look at you like you're judging him and would never in a million years give him a chance. Or, he starts to blush and ask if his outfit is OK to request the approval of a fashion student.
All of these reactions can happen, but you never know. Love is the same for anyone in fashion (ridiculously complicated). Carrying this label comes with a little extra baggage.
4. Being Happy
This may be the ultimate difference, at least for me. Now when I am running around the city like a mad woman, looking as insane as I feel in that moment (probably getting lunch for somebody), I start to get this crazy masochistic feeling in my gut.
It's as if this is actually making me happy, because ironically, it really is. If you truly love the industry, every good thing will outweigh any bad. It's true.
People who work in fashion do it because they love it. They most definitely do not do it for the high salary or benefits. They do it because it feeds their souls in various ways that no other career could do. That is why making it in the fashion industry might just be the most rewarding and valuable career aspiration a person could truly have.
With all of that said, next time you meet a student in the fashion industry, keep in mind that you may be talking to one of the most passionate and extraordinary creatures on Earth.