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College of Design

Friday, October 30, 2015

We're Halfway There...

Hello Everyone!

I hope you all have been enjoying this beautiful fall weather as much as I have!

I cannot believe that we have already hit the halfway point of the semester; it feels like it just started! With that realization comes many emotions including both excitement and amazement of just how far I’ve come, but also a fair amount of stress. I'm beginning to realize just how much work I need to get done before our Senior Show on December 9th. Speaking of our Senior Show, we officially have a name! We've decided to call the show "Layers" and are currently busy putting the final touches on our branding by refining our logo and color scheme. We should be debuting all of that and a brand new website very soon so make sure you keep checking back here to get the link and read all about us!

Apart from planning our show, the two classes I am taking this semester are Thesis Studio Exhibition and Portfolio. While both require quite a bit of work and can be stressful at times, overall I am really enjoying them! In particular I am finding Portfolio to be an endlessly valuable class. Not only do we get class time to critique and refine old projects with new eyes, but our professor brings in professionals from the industry to talk all topics post-graduation with us. I have already gathered so much incredible advice and insight into the design industry, I can't wait to start using it all in just a few short weeks!

Also, make sure to put December 9, 2015 on your calendars to come see all of the seniors’ hard work. You won’t want to miss it!

Until next time,

Graphic Design

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Forever Bonded

Hi everyone! We’re about halfway through the semester and I hope it’s going well for you all! I’m currently writing this blog post in the studio, as I’m continuing to develop my collection. We have our test garments due a week from this coming Monday. Eek! So naturally, my classmates and I are in the studio working late. This will probably be a regular occurrence for the week to come.

Working this late has become a natural part of the experience of being in the Apparel Design program, not just here, but in any kind of fashion or apparel design program anywhere. This may seem like a lot of work that we have to do, and that’s because it is, but it’s a bonding experience that you can talk about with any fashion/apparel designer. I know that I’ve made some of my best friends in this program, due to the fact that we work so closely with each other, and can bond over the late nights we work together. I can honestly say that I probably would not have made it as far as I have without them. We have become a close family.

Now back to my collection. The next time I post, I will be in the stages of my final looks, so make sure to stay tuned.

Make sure to follow my blog at to keep up to date on the craziness that is about to happen this semester. Also, follow our Instagram to see some more pics

Apparel Design

Monday, October 26, 2015

Welcoming Exploration

Hello readers, old and new!

School is back in session and has definitely started off with a bang. Entering my last(!) year of architecture, we are getting even more into architecture –studio, structures, environmental technology, oh boy! It is going to be a very busy semester filled with creativity and equations.

Along with my classes, I am also part of The Center for Academic Planning & Exploration’s (CAPE) mentorship program. CAPE is an awesome (free) center for students to talk to if they are undecided, or looking to get more information on the area of study they have chosen. Already this year I have been paired with a first year student studying architecture who is curious on the lifestyle of architecture students and which degree to pursue in the future. I believe gaining insight from students is the best advice. Professors can only tell you so much about the courses, while current students can provide a better understanding of the workload and the atmosphere around Rapson Hall. Architecture is definitely a fantastic field of study, and I am looking forward to be able to provide an insight to future gophers throughout this year! Here's studio 03 just a few weeks in..


Friday, October 23, 2015

Getting to know your professors

Hello everyone!

Hope you are all enjoying this beautiful fall weather. As much as I love the warm weather, I definitely love to pile on the scarves and sweaters around this time of year.

One of the hardest transitions for me going from high school to university was figuring out how to get to know my professors. Going from a high school class, with my teachers always knowing my first name to a giant lecture hall makes meeting them a little bit harder. You wonder how you are ever going to get to know any of your professors, let alone build a network with them. Sound like you?

While I am no longer in the giant lecture halls, building relationships with my professors is still something I am working on. They can provide invaluable experiences about your field of work, tips to succeed in your course, and might even help you land a job! Meeting professors in college does require a bit more effort on your part, but it definitely can make a difference in your college career. Here are some tips that have helped me build amazing relationships with our University of Minnesota professors!

-Don’t rush out the door right after class. This might be tempting (especially on the first day), but it is important to introduce yourself and take the initiative.  Especially if later on you need a favor from the professor—an extension or a little bit of help—having built that relationship will make it easier for them to help you!

-Go to office hours. This one came from my mom. It might have taken me a little while (okay, two years) for me to use this one. I always felt that I was taking time out of their day or that I was inconveniencing them. Once I started to go, it really helped me with the course as well as to make talking with my professors less “scary.”

-Stay in touch! I am a huge fan of networking sites like LinkedIn. I always make sure (after introducing myself of course) to connect with my professors. This has helped me network with other organizations as well as to check back in with past professors after our course is over. It is super easy to shoot them an e-mail every once in a while and it really does mean a lot to them! Here I was able to reconnect with a past Leadership professor over coffee…

One of my professors is actually speaking at the upcoming Retail Connect event on October 28th. Having a course with her and getting to know her through class will help me make even more out of this amazing event!


Thursday, October 22, 2015

The Countdown is On!

Hey everyone,

I have some very exciting news: I am officially accepted into the Rome-Istanbul study abroad program for this spring semester!! I will be traveling to Rome, Italy for a month and then to Istanbul, Turkey with 16 other Landscape Design and Planning and Architecture students.  This program is through the College of Design and the coursework is specifically designed for us, which is such a great opportunity!

During my time abroad I will have the chance to explore the beautiful streets of Rome in a drawing workshop that looks at public and private spaces of the architecture and urban landscapes. I have been to Rome once before, but am excited to fully immerse myself in the culture and life of the city. While in Istanbul I will be taking courses looking into the history of the city as well as a design studio, which focuses on the Bosphorous, the strait that separates the European and Asian sides of the city. For those of you that don’t know where Istanbul is, (I will admit I had to look it up on a map) it is located in Turkey with the strait connecting the Black Sea and Sea of Marmara. To learn more about this program you can visit the website here. I am so excited for this incredible opportunity and am already counting down the days until I go! Less than 100 days until I leave for these beautiful cities!

Stay tuned for more updates on my study abroad experiences!
Landscape Design and Planning

Photo sources

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Time Management Skills are Required

Hi everybody!

I hope everyone is adjusting to the change in the season and the cooler temperatures. I'm going to miss the warm weather, but I love fall for the fun jackets, scarfs, and layered looks.

The past 2 weeks have been an eye-opening introduction to the amount of work that needs to be done for the remainder of the semester. This semester I’m taking Technical Design Studio as well as Apparel Design Studio V, which means that because they are both studio courses, they require a lot of work and time. In my Technical Design Studio, we are learning the production process of the industry by replicating the process from beginning to end. We will be creating school uniforms and play clothes that will be sent to children in Africa. This is going to require a lot of work as a group in order to produce about 40 of each of the looks.

Sketching and Ideations for my Senior Collection
Then for my Apparel Design Studio V, I’m continuing the process of creating my senior collection. We just completed our first illustrations of our collection to present to the faculty for critique, which leads into more physical development of our collection. We now need to start the patterning process, so in the next couple of weeks we have to start making test garments of our looks. Doing all of this at the same will be tough, but not impossible. I’m definitely going to be utilizing my Google calendar very extensively this semester to manage my time as efficiently as I can.

Make sure to follow my blog at to keep up to date on all that is about to happen this semester. Also, follow our Instagram to see some more pictures

Until next time,

Apparel Design

Friday, October 16, 2015

Networking, job fairs, and putting yourself out there!

As a graduating Senior this May (eek!), the past few weeks have been filled with applying, interviewing, and networking with professionals. While landing a job after graduation seems very stressful, there are amazing resources here on campus that you can utilize to learn about all the potential we have as Retail Merchandising students! With my Internship Preparation course, research, mentors, and general networking, I have come up with a few tricks to help with career fairs and networking events. Here are some of the tips that stuck most with me:

-Visit the Career and Internship Service Center. Seriously. It’s not scary at all and they can help you with everything from finding open jobs, to making new networking connections, and even critiquing your resume and cover letters!

-Make sure to bring your newly-critiqued, amazing resume to the job fair and networking events.

-SMILE. Also, shake hands while introducing yourself. This will help you have something to do in the first 5 seconds if you panic and start to get nervous.

-Have an elevator pitch ready. So ready that it is almost second nature. This will help start the flow of conversation from the very beginning.

-Research the companies beforehand. Also, try to do some research on the representatives that will be there. Brand reps love to talk about their company…that’s why they are there! Make sure to ask questions about what they love most about their brand, their company culture, etc.

-Wear something that makes you feel good. This will give you extra confidence and might even make you stand out more to the recruiters! Always dress business casual with something unique that makes you feel awesome. The Limited and Express are my personal favorite stores to get more business pieces!

-Ask for a business card and shake their hand.

-Make sure to follow up with the recruiters later that day and thank them for their time. Add in something that will help them remember you specifically from your earlier conversation.

-Connect with the professionals you met via LinkedIn.

All in all, networking is something that shouldn’t scare you. It is an opportunity to meet new professionals and learn about what makes them so passionate about your career field! 


Wednesday, October 14, 2015

College & Career

Hey readers,

We are nearly one month into the school year and here in Studio 03, we already have one more project to add to our portfolios. Studio is intense, but always worth the time and effort when you receive a great review. Here's an image from our first studio project this semester.

I have been able to dedicate a bit more time to these projects since I have not been working like I usually am during the school year. However, that is about to change because I got a job! I have always been an advocate of student employment, especially in a field like architecture, or any design for that matter. I feel it is essential to start gaining experience early on. 

Design school challenges us intellectually, it makes us think outside of the box in a way we probably never have before. It's about learning new ways of exploration, theoretically, metaphorically, and physically. The skills learned in design school are so valuable, but would be difficult to learn in any other environment. By complementing our education with professional experience, we are able to become more well-rounded students, ready for the career world. With professional experience, we get to learn how to work with a team, rather than just our peers. Skills working with clients, project practicality, and building codes are gained.

The U has great resources within the university, as well as within the Twin Cities. Finding a job is easy through the U’s employment page as well as GoldPass. See what kind of opportunities are available – internships, assistants within Rapson, or even undergraduate research assistants (my newest position!).