Thursday, March 20, 2008

It's Not What You Know, It's Who You Know

Being a non-fashion college student desperate for a fashion internship has made me realize how true it is when people say "It's not what you know, it's who you know."

Success in part is all about connections, Too bad I'm rather lacking in the connections department at the moment. My recent desperation for finding an internship over the summer has showed me that it is a lot harder to get through to the next level without having someone "help" you out. I realize that I am like a majority of people who must struggle hard and find our own way into whatever dream I hope to accomplish. I haven't given up yet, so don't worry. I don't think I can ever give up on my dreams. It's my inherent nature to be a dreamer. After all, it's about the journey we take in accomplishing our goals that's more fruitful than the ending goal itself after all.

So today, actually just 30 minutes ago, I was once again smacked hard in the face with my lack of connections as I eaves-dropped onto a phone interview. It was as if the world, in it's cruel and twisted way, was taunting me. I walked into our floor lounge in hopes of getting a few more minutes of studying done for my final tomorrow. There was a guy from my floor there and when I immediately entered he told me that he had a 20 minute phone interview. It took me a while to register what he just said, my brain cogs aren't working perfectly at the moment, so I was like "okay, that's fine". I wasn't quite sure if he wanted me to leave or was saying that I can stay but he would be talking. I decided to just sit there despite what he said.

His interview began. I decided not to tune out because well a) he was talking sort of loud for me to be able to tune him out b) I like to eavesdrop and c) it was fun to listen in.

I quickly found out what it was for: a summer internship in Shanghai for Louis Vuitton. After I heard him say, "I would really like to have this internship with Louis Vuitton...", I knew it was going to be no studying and all listening. If my inner id took control, I would have grabbed the phone and started interviewing for myself. He started talking about himself and his accomplishments of how he was going to study abroad in Shanghai over the summer and that he's really into understanding international markets. He talked about how he was very active in Model UN, traveling to Paris for conferences and whatnot. He talked about being a part of an Honors society that "you're either in, or you're not". Then he started talking about his past summer internships where he analyzed the precious metals markets and helped clients with their investments.

In my head, I started thinking, "Wow. This guy is going to go far." His intensiveness and all his "stuff" on his resume made me feel inadequate when it came to my own puny resume. It was weird because my first impression of this guy told quite the opposite. It didn't even seem like he was all that interested in fashion so I found it a little weird that he would be given such an opportunity.

Later into the interview I found out that this guy, aside from his impressive experience, is also a wonderful liar. He was asked about his frat and basically highlighted it as a brotherhood of philanthropy. Suuuure..... And then he started talking about the Chinese students on campus as if he knew much about the Chinese people here. I got a little pissed when he said that most of the American born Chinese people here like the pre-med stuff. Hello, I'm Chinese, I'm sitting right here, and I sure as heck am not a pre-med although I do have to say, the sciences are dominated by Asians.

Twenty minutes later and a whole lot of interviewing, this guy got an internship with Louis Vuitton in China. I turned into a green-eyed monster. I really wanted to say congratulations to him and ask him about it because for one I would really, I mean really, like to have such an internship experience.

When he finished another guy came in. The interview guy told the other guy, "Dude, I just got the phone with China and I'm going to be interning at Louis Vuitton." The other guy was like "Cool man" and other guy talk mumbo-jumbo. Interview guy was then all "Yeah...I was sweating balls, I made so much up and the interviewee bought it all." Okay, I thought, there goes my admiration of his experience. Then the other guy was like "How did you get it?" and then interview guy was like, "My mom hooked me up and sent them my resume."

Hm. Hmph. That explains a lot now.

He left and I was left to my printed out notes of macro-economics feeling connection-less and in another word lame.

So will continue my efforts in studying for this final that I am totally unprepared for now because even if I don't have the "It's who you know" at least I will "know" something and ultimately create more connections with myself in the end.

21 comments:

Secretista said...

Girrrl. I know exactly how you feel. I am at a nonfashion schoo land I want a Fashion internship. How this will happen... only God knows.

emsie said...

I would love to intern one day. I know it's going to be tough though.

Isabel said...

Hey well, maybe if you make friends with this douchebag-sounding guy, he can get you into some cool internships??

Either way, I know what you mean. Nepotism is one of those nasty facts of life that like to fuck over the people who actually care.

Eli said...

keep your eye on this website

http://www.wellthreaded.com/

lalaliu said...

thanks eli :)

The Clothes Horse said...

Oh that sucks. It is deffo who you know and that is why this world is so evil...

Annie said...

oh damn that was depressing.

Alya said...

its really hard and ultimately u need to know at least one person who's an insider. But above all, your talents are the ones that will get u recognized, not B.S :)

1234 said...

wow i would be so insulted about the whole chinese thing. goodness gracious. do you read fashionista.com? they ALWAYS post internship opportunities, where you ccan email them yourself first and stuff. but theyre mostly in the US (hopefully you live there) especially in NY. i wish you good luck in your endeavors!

Lia said...

that's pretty depressing. things like that are so unfair its unreal.

i was wondering on another note would you like to exchange links with my blog?

Anna Pope said...

I'm in med school and I don't know how it's where you are but in my country sometimes the only way to get good internships at the best hospitals is only about who you know and not how well you can work a scalpel so I do know where you're coming from.

But in the end, just like Alya said, it's still the talent that gets you recognized :)

N/OutofFashion said...

Karma will get him.

He won't be able to do the job properly.

lee jones said...

gahhh, i'm in the same position. no connections. it sucks how some people are just given these opportunities and don't appreciate them at all.

Rose said...

Same boat. I knew exactly how you feel.

Lisa said...

i googled sth (forgot wt) and end up at ur blog. ur profile is just amazing, lol.

and i think i can do with some connections too. sigh.

anyways i will be stalking ur blog from now on, haha :)

ceruleanxstar said...

awww, tiffany, I'm sure you can dredge up some connections if you need them! but iono, my mom's always been like "connections" my whole life, which makes me want to do it w/o, just to prove I can. might be a stupid idea, though. I'm still debating...there's a law internship I can get possibly through "connections" but yeah.

green-eyed monster of jealousy. shakespeare. ahhhh!

<3 beckster

Suan Aik said...

I so know what you mean...I'm a computer engineering major, and yet I still can't get a programming/IT internship, let alone one in another field. And the other day after one of my housemates got off the phone and immediately started shouting "internship internship!" Urrgghhh...I just wanted to get up and leave!

Anyways, good luck, and remember never to stoop too low to get one of these things, it's just not worth it

Pratishtha Durga said...

hey, I just sent you a mail with an internship requirement. Apply even if your are not in NYC. Best of luck. You are really talented and I do feel you deserve this internship. Hope it works out for you.

Taryn "Skinny Genes" B. said...

well i got my fashion internship because of what i know... I actually dont have connections...ur right, it does help to have them, but in my case that was the opposite. It was crazy because I longed for an internship so bad, and now that I got it, theirs a strong chance I cant continue with it.

deryik said...

i was just jumping from one blog to another and ended up here.. just wanted to say, people in the office will know that hes a mummy's boy (god, i love office gossips) and hes doomed... even if hes talented, this little "network" will be stalking him forever.
plus, if he was a good liar, he wouldnt have picked the "precious metal investment"! only thing i know about lying is to keep it real :P

no worries. if u dont get the internship, u'll get the actual job.
loved the eyes on the dress btw. reminds me of the blue evil-eye beads.

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