How to Network as a College Student

Hello all! It has been a hot minute since I’ve posted on my blog. I’m not going to lie.. My motivation slumped, and a lot of life happened to me these past few months. Currently, I’m back in college and in full swing (Lord, help), but I’m ready to be back in your news feed.

To begin, there has been a puzzling question that has been on my mind for some time now. If you know me, you know that I am extremely eager to learn new things. So, my question is how do you break into the PR industry (or any industry you are working in) as a college student?

Believe me when I say this, I’ve Googled this, Pinterest-ed it, Youtube-ed, Read books and articles, Podcast-ed it and just about everything else. I made myself a LinkedIn account, follow about 10-15 new people/companies on social media (Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat)  every day, and read articles written from professionals. Here’s my problem that many of you might have in common with me: How do I break into the industry if I’m from a small town and don’t live in a major city? This question has been TAUNTING me. I feel that I have been doing all the right things..so where are my results at?  So far, I’ve connected with professionals on many platforms and I stalk their pages religiously, but it is hard to meet them because I don’t live in their city. Like I said, I’m eager and hungry to learn more.

Even though I haven’t gotten my big break, I have thought of 4 tips on how to network and learn more about your industry and what you want from life.

1). Find a job in the industry you want. Any job.  I recently got hired as a Stylist at Francesca’s Boutique. I love fashion, but truthfully never thought I’d work retail, but I’m learning a lot about production, sales, and what it means to work for a corporation. Even though I may never meet the CEO at least I know the retail side of the Fashion industry.

2). As a college student join clubs that you may have an interest in. On my campus at Western Michigan University there are over 300 RSO’s (registered student organizations) and I’m currently a member of M.O.D.A which stand for Merchandising Opportunities and Design Association. One reason why I enjoy it is that I’m with other students who love fashion just as much as me. Again, I was hesitant at first, but I went for it. I may not have met career changing professionals, but there have been a few speakers who are big names in the fashion industry and hearing their stories are so inspiring. Also, weekly M.O.D.A meetings is a good break from my academics.

3). Follow as many people as you can that are in your industry on social media. Okay, maybe not EVERYONE. But, search for people and companies by looking at their pages and seeing if you have something in common. Do they like fashion? Are they from a big city? Do they love sweets like me? Are they in my field? I ask these questions and when I do find new accounts to follow I follow them on EVERYTHING. Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, Pinterest, LinkedIn. I mean, what if I got called for an interview and I already knew more about their company than they thought (impressive, am I right?)

4). Be hopeful! I’m from a small town and I don’t go to school in a major city..and I forgot to mention, I’m a poor college student. So, at times I feel disappointed and behind. Some days I feel that I already need to have 5 internships and a 4.75 GPA. Then I float back into reality and remember that working hard is a process, and good things take time.

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Networking doesn’t always mean face-to-face interactions. For me, networking means learning about new people and companies in your industry and following them on social media, because I LOVE the power of social media (the positive one, of course). Networking also means trying new things and figuring out what I want in life. And of course, networking is an on going process, so you do have to stay hopeful. Truthfully, I’m no expert. I’m just a really driven young millennial who is extremely passionate. Now, I want to ask you..What tips do you have to expand your network? Anyone else work in the PR industry?

 

 

 

 

 

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5 Essential Apps for Fashion Newbies

If you’re like me, and have a passion to get entirely submerged into everything fashion, here are 5 apps that I’ve recently discovered that will channel your inner fashionista (seriously, your pretty face will be glued to your phone).

I’ve done a lot of soul-searching the past few weeks. Writing down my dreams, my goals, what makes me different. Although, the process is frustrating, I have been able to research some of the most elite fashion blogs, fashion PR firms, editors, magazines, and apps.

Since, I don’t have the time to spend at the bookstore or library sticking my head in fashion how to books, apps seem to be the route most suited for me. I mean, who doesn’t love a new app folder located at the top of your screen? Fashion trends are constantly evolving, and it can be difficult to keep up. Thankfully, there are some pretty neat apps that will help relieve the stress of finding the latest trends. Thanks to me, they will be at the tips of your polished fingernails (literally).

1.)   Instagram – This is a no brainer. Instagram is solely a visual app. There are literally, zillions of bloggers, stylists, magazines, PR firms, on the insta. I love that I can look at my friend’s hottest new clothes, and search for the top stylist, and get a daily look into their closets! Plus, this app is so versatile. If you want to see a photo of an adorable puppy with cat eye sunglasses on, or desserts that make your mouth drool, and photos of friends enjoying a night out on the town, it’s just a click away!

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2.)  Polyvore – Okay, I’m obsessed. Not only is this app addicting to be on. It actually has helped me style some of my favorite pieces. The best part, is that it says the price (you can adjust the price range too) and tells you where to buy. You can create, browse, follow other stylists, and even publish your own pieces and upload it to different social media platforms.

 

3.) Bustle – Catching up on the latest news, fashion trends, and gossip is all in one very adorable and flexible app. You get to tailor the app to your interests, likes, and dislikes. This app is all subjects that floats in a woman’s head.. so like, food to relationships to beauty tips, adorable pups, and latest trends.

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4. ) Vogue Runway- Exploring the most distinguished designers the minute they hit the runways in New York, London, Milan, and Paris Fashion Weeks. The collections are always an inspiration to keep thinking about the next biggest trend. The easy to use gallery allows for quick clicks to learn about different collections. Totally immersing myself into couture.

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5.) The Hunt –Whether you want to exchange style advice, search for new styles, or find out where your fav instagrammer got their outfit from is all in this app. Find, connect, and share different styles that are comparable to your own.

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I’m still on the search for the most informative fashion apps out there. So far, these have been the easiest to use and have helped me learn more about the world of ever-changing fashion. Are there any apps that is your go to for fashion?

Good luck my fellow fashion newbies!