This year, I was on the executive board for a club at Cornell called Careers In the Fashion Industry (aka CIFI!). The aim of this club is to connect Cornell students with professionals in the fashion industry (usually alumni) and to provide students with example career paths, networking opportunities, and mentors! It's a mission that I'm very passionate about because it's never too early to start planning for a future career! I spent this semester constructing a new CIFI website (check it out, I worked really hard on it!!) and assisting in the preparation for our annual Gala event. There is a lot more information about the Gala on the CIFI website, but essentially, we invite a panel of distinguished alumni to return to Cornell, share their wisdom and career experiences, and meet our current students. It's an exciting evening where students can dress up, participate in luxury raffles, and enjoy delicious food from our Cornell catering service!
This year's Gala was held in the commons of our Human Ecology Building. This building is home to my college, The College of Human Ecology, and it's a wonderful place to host an event. Prior to the event, CIFI club members arrived to set up. We decorated the tables with floral centerpieces and sparkling cider, and in the back of the room we organized our raffle, which included Tom Ford sunglasses, a $250 Lord and Taylor gift card, and a Shoshanna dress!
This year's gala was themed "A Night of Luxury," so we invited speakers who had experience in the realm of luxury fashion. Our speakers were:
Jose Chan '93 - VP of Business Development at Celect, Founder of New York Fashion Retail Association
Misha Pinkhasov '96 - Author of "Real Luxury," Principal and Co-Founder of NAIR-SAFIR strategy consultants
Cori Galpern '97 - Senior Vice President of Global Communications at Tom Ford International
Monica Johnsrud '07 - Designer at Shoshanna
Brittany Lutz '12 - Senior Analyst of Omnichannel Customer Experience at Bloomingdales.
They represented a wide variety of skills and interests, and hearing their stories about working in retail, traveling around the world, and navigating through the crazy fashion industry was so fun!
Me with my friends and fellow fashion majors, Sophie, Brenna, and Orli. I am wearing a Clover Canyon dress and Christian Louboutin shoes.
At the gala, we had a red carpet and a photographer, so all attendees had the opportunity to feel like celebrities!
The 2015-2016 CIFI E-board: Brooke, Sophie, myself, Jackie, Nicole, and Georgie!
But perhaps the best part of the whole evening was having Chloe there! Chloe traveled all the way from Bucknell to come visit me for the weekend, and even though her car broke down along the way, we still had a blast!
Speaking with successful alumni is always so inspirational; it's exciting to see people who walked on my campus and took my classes just 5 or 10 years ago are now living out their dreams! While I'll be off campus for next year's Gala, I'm looking forward to see how the new executive board will coordinate this fantastic event!