Starting college is a scary time for many students. We ponder what we will experience, what friends—if any—we will make, and what events we will be able to participate in. When I was a senior in high school, I knew New York City is where I belonged, and after attending Accepted Students Day, I became convinced that LIM was the place for me.
Fast forward to Orientation ... and all that certainty was gone. I was scared, nervous, and had no idea where I belonged.
Below are things that I wish I knew my first semester at LIM College, because of course, everything turned out alright!
1. It is okay to not know what you want to do after college. As a freshman, I felt anxious whenever someone asked what I wanted to do after graduation, or when we’d go around the class and other students had a short-term and a long-term plan, and I didn’t. As a freshman, you are going to be taking introduction classes, and you’ll be able to dip your toes in the different majors LIM offers. Give yourself time, and you will find what you truly want to do.
2. It’s okay to not know your major. The best thing about the fashion industry is your major choice does not force you onto a specific career path. I have peers who started as marketing majors, who took on non-marketing internships, and now work as full-time planners and buyers for major department stores. Your experiences will shape your future, and will lead you to a more structured career path. It’s not something you need to focus on as a freshman.
3. Never say "no" to trying something new. Being in New York City for college is truly an incredible experience. You will be immersed in many different cultures and meet people from different backgrounds. It is important to be outgoing and break out of your shell. You should come to New York with ZERO preset expectations and allow this amazing city to create them. The best experiences you’ll have will be those which happen spontaneously, such as last-minute events. These will be the places where you will connect with life long friends.
4. Remain positive during an internship. Throughout my time at LIM, I was able to intern at Barney’s New York, Salvatore Ferragamo, SMCP (Sandro and Maje), and Tom Ford. Throughout my internships, I learned immediately to say yes, and be flexible. Every little task you do is important to the company. For example, if you don’t run to catch that taxi, the samples won’t make it on time for that Vogue photo shoot!
5. You will learn A LOT in these four years. As a 2020 graduate, I can assure you these will be some of the most memorable years of your life. You will grow as a person, you may be living alone, you will have to learn about New York City, you will learn about time management, how to balance school with work, and you will learn how to budget (if you’re lucky, I still haven’t been able to master this part).
6. It’s okay not to have what other people have. At any school, you may be surrounded with people who come from different economic backgrounds. Some students will attend classes with the latest pair of sneakers, or designer handbag. I won’t argue with the fact that these are nice to have, but don’t spend all your money on it. You do not have to impress anyone.
7. Learn about self care. Make sure you are sleeping sufficiently, pushing yourself to go to that workout, and, most importantly, eating healthy. For some of you, this will be the first time you will be on your own and it’s necessary to take care of yourself.