Ulster University helped me achieve my current career success by...
Teaching me the basic’s in a mixture of disciplines so I could be flexible in my skills for future employment
Activities I was involved in at Ulster to enhance my employability
Having a part time job in a local textile factory which taught me about their weaving processes, fabric testing, printing, colour & design work. It gave me my first experience of working in a textile related environment, which I later returned to for another 6 week placement alongside the designers.
Getting involved with local events & workshops which encouraged me to make connections with creatives around Ireland – benefitting me greatly on many occasions in my education & career. Volunteering is a great way to acquire opportunities, think of it as priceless experience on the journey for your dream job!
Taking ant work experience I could whether paid or unpaid!
Work hard! Putting your head down and using workspace time is very important in your learning. Technicians are there to help along the way. I often found myself working from 8am-10pm (which sounds crazy!) but my dedication was noticeable in the work I was producing.
How placement enhanced my employability
Leaving Ireland for international work experience. I took the leap and moved to New York for an Internship for 3 months in a fashion design studio after 2nd year. I returned to final year with a totally different approach to my work, I learnt more about myself and I gained invaluable experience in the fashion industry, working alongside well known designers & other creative, passionate, likeminded interns. Any related experience gained internationally is fantastic on your resume!
Top 3 most significant steps on my career path so far
- Getting a design job with Lululemon – my dream company to work for when in university while designing my yoga-wear collection. I had to pack up my life and move to Canada for this position but it was definitely worth it!
- My overall experience in New York- moving there on my own was the best decision as I pushed myself to get more involved with new people, cultures and to explore a great city!
What would your advice to students be?
Take time to explore opportunities, to find what you like and don’t like. Get as much work experience & many as many connections as possible.
Work on building a strong resume to ensure when you leave university seeking employment, you have lots to offer – and a variety!