“Being part of a team that does the PR for such established designers is a big personal accomplishment. I am always proud to see something in a magazine or on a celebrity from one of our designers, especially when it is something I sent.” – Ilana
Barbie was the culprit that led Ilana down a road of fashion-loving, which eventually formulated a journey of industry test-runs and conclusively brought this driven girl to her perfect career matchup: fashion PR. This dedicated individual sees her internship at C&M Media as a prime opportunity to excel and balance tasks, with the bonus perk of seeing her behind-the-scenes work go public.
What is your background?
I was born in Miami and raised in a small town in Central Florida. I transferred to LIM College in January from Miami International University of Art and Design. I pursued my dream of moving to New York City, and all of the pieces of the crazy puzzle I call my life are finally falling into place.
Why Fashion PR?
My aunt owned a small boutique in Coral Gables; it was like my second home. One Christmas I was given a Barbie game for my computer, and you could design outfits for her, cut them out, tape them together, and create different looks. I would make crazy skirts and tops but instead of putting them on my Barbie, I would give them to my Aunt and ask her to send them to her friends in New York so they could be made for real people. As years went on, my love for fashion grew unfortunately my artistic skills did not.
After high school, I went to a classic four-year state university and quickly realized that wasn’t for me. I transferred to the Miami International University of Art and Design to study Fashion Merchandising, and I immediately started volunteering at different events and fashion shows. I volunteered with the PR team of our local Saks Fifth Avenue, worked several fashions shows in Miami including Mercedes Benz Swim, an event with Giuseppe Zanotti, a collective designer show with Bal Harbour Shops, and a Zac Posen show. I transferred to LIM College and switched my major to Marketing for Fashion, and I could not be more certain that I am in the right field.
How did you land your position?
LIM College requires that you do three internships before graduation (I love that about the school). I was looking for an internship in fashion PR for my Junior Work Project, and my friend knew of an open position, and the rest is history. In our industry, every contact is a great contact, so be nice to everyone you meet!
What is an example of a typical day in the office?
The first thing I do is check my emails, then I unpack any shipment that comes in. In majority, I spend the day trafficking samples and creating invoices.
What are your responsibilities?
Keeping track of our samples, checking for credits in various magazines, and keeping the showroom organized.
What is a recent success story that you have been a part of?
Honestly I accomplish something every day. Being part of a team that does the PR for such established designers is a big personal accomplishment. I am always proud to see something in a magazine or on a celebrity from one of our designers, especially when it is something I sent.
What challenges are attached to your job?
I have to be extremely organized and on top of everything. I am responsible if a look is sent to the wrong place or if it is lost, so I have to be able to juggle several tasks at one time and make sure they are done properly.
What aspects of the job requirements were a surprise to you?
I have heard many interns say that their biggest responsibility was to run errands or get coffee, so I expected the same for my internship. I was pleasantly surprised when I realized how much responsibility was given to me. There are so many intern horror stories out there, but I feel very lucky to intern at an amazing company, and I could not ask for a better boss.
In a few words, how would you summarize your agency?
C&M Media is a diverse firm that has established designers as well as new up and coming designers. Regardless, each one is treated like a priority. I think they thrive because of the tight bond that they have with on another. C&M Media really is a team, and I could not have asked for a better group of people to teach me more about the industry that I love.