4 Ways I Stood Out at My Internships and How You Can Too

Iva Kozeli

Iva Kozeli

Whether you’re beginning your first job out of college this summer, or just starting your very first internship, it’s a super exciting time in your life. I will never forget the feeling I had when starting my first internship after my sophomore of college. I was working for Anna Sui, a women’s wear designer whose office was located in the middle of the garment center. Each morning, I was thrilled heading into work, immersed in the hustle and bustle of it all. 

From there I went onto intern with Marie Claire Magazine and the year after that, I landed my first job as a fashion assistant at Teen Vogue. Between all of the experiences I’ve had, there have been certain things I have learned along the way that have helped me get ahead. Below, 4 ways to kill it at your internship this summer and be a total #GirlBoss.  

Come in Early
At my first two internships I always came in at least ten if not twenty minutes early. Arriving early gives you a great advantage. You will have more time to spend with your boss and will get to know them on a more personal level. Also, whenever I get in early, I always feel much calmer and like I can take on the day in stride by getting a jump-start on my projects. When you’re running behind in the morning, you’re bound to feel more anxious when you are forced to rush around. 

Don’t be Afraid to Speak Up
When I was interning in the production department at Anna Sui, I decided I wanted to experience all the company had to offer. About halfway through my internship, once I felt like I had a good handle on my day-to-day tasks, I approached my boss about my interest to learn about the various parts of the company.  Thankfully, she was thrilled to hear about my interest to go above and beyond. She spoke to our showroom manager and let me assist in their department twice a week so I was able to better understand the impact my work was having.  This experience really helped me stand out at the company and to form even more connections. 

Similarly, when I was interning at Marie Claire, my boss was going to Miami Swim Week in July and was going to be out of office. She told me that I could just take off the time she was going to be out, but I asked her if she would be open to me spending the time in another department so that I could learn more. I ended up working the beauty department at Marie Claire during that time and was able to learn even more about how the magazine operates as a whole. 

Offer to Take on More Responsibility
Whenever your boss asks, “can someone do xyz?” be the first person to jump up and say, “YES!” The more often you are happy to take on more work and help out your boss, the more she will come to you with projects. And, the more you prove yourself to her, the more she will begin to give you the important tasks. 

At Marie Claire I had the incredible opportunity of interning directly with one of the fashion editors. On a daily basis, I was assisting her with market requests for her pages and sending the products to our in house studio to be shot. Soon enough, after I proved to her that I could handle these tasks and more, she gave me the opportunity to attend press days and collection previews on her behalf. 

Dress the Part
Whether you are getting coffee or sitting in on an important pitch meeting, dress your best. Do your best to come to work each day polished, poised, and professional. Look to add timeless pieces to your wardrobe like a wispy floral dress, black pencil skirt, and classic shoe that you can mix and match and wear over and over again. 

For an inside look into the fashion industry follow me on Instagram & Snapchat @cvazzana.

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RELATED: How to Stay in Touch with your Boss Long After your Internship Is Over