Luisa Herrera-Garcia is an LIM graduate who has built an illustrious, multi-decade career in the fashion industry. Currently the Senior Vice President of Global Sourcing for Alexander Wang, Luisa gives back to the LIM community by serving on the Industry Advisory Board, where her contributions include mentoring students, facilitating internships, and providing input to help the College and its students evolve and grow.
Why did you decide to join LIM’s Industry Advisory Board?
I wanted to have a voice and make a difference; I wanted to punch holes in the status quo. I think sometimes when you have members of a board that have been there for a while you can get stagnant, so it is important to bring in new blood to think of different ideas and help the college grow.
What are some of the activities you have been involved with as an Advisory Board member?
I have been part of the mentorship program for the last three years and currently have two mentees. I also get involved in different events we host, like fashion shows and Pitch Night. I also support the college’s internship programs by using my position and connections at Alexander Wang.
We [Advisory Board members] also make ourselves available to students by reviewing their resumes and allowing them to do practice interviews with us. By the end of all of that, these students are confident, and we’ve helped them evolve to work in this industry.
Why is it so important for college students to complete internships?
It gives them an opportunity to experience the career they want to pursue. It also gives them an opportunity to work at companies they believe they want to work for. Sometimes you have an image of a company you want to work with and when you are working for them you realize they're not for you. Internships are indicators of where you want to go and where you want to be when you get your first job.
What makes LIM different from other fashion colleges?
What stood out to me was how dedicated the faculty were to spending time with the students and how they were all part of the industry. We have such a great internship program that allows students to get the hands-on experience necessary to thrive in the fashion industry. We also have the privilege of hosting many guest lecturers who are industry experts. They not only build on the knowledge learned in textbooks, but also give an overview of how they achieved their goals and how that can apply to each student on their own career path.