For those who know who I am, you are reading correctly: Kate the Conqueror is at it again, conquering new land in her name (and those who don't know who I am need to get with it). That's right, interning in Milan with Global Experiences, studying abroad in London, traveling everywhere from Marrakech to Toulon, Cork to Tenerife, Amsterdam to Paris... it all wasn't enough. I'd like to officially give a warm "Aloha" from the beautiful North Shore town of Haleiwa in Hawaii.
I know what you're thinking (aside from obvious jealousy). How is Hawaii an option at all when you want to work in fashion? Here me out.
I did eight internships in just the course of a year, including an international one in fashion business in Milan through GE (which also made me conversationally fluent in Italian). I finished school a semester early at Montclair State University even though I spent a semester studying at University of Westminster. Essentially, for a 22 year old, my resume is stacked.
But let's be honest. The job market is awful, and countless girls my age with similar experience are coming to the New York City area, MY domain, by the plane load looking for the same handful of jobs. And I did get a full time job, don't get me wrong! But it was nowhere near what I want to be doing and it was really just making me unhappy.
So I changed it. I am not somebody to sit around in misery and wait around to die (a little exaggerated, maybe). I visited Haleiwa in June for two weeks and fell in love with it, so I decided, "Well, if that will make me happy, let's do it."
But don't worry, I'll never give up my fashion career. I didn't abandon it at all by moving here. You see, instead I am applying to fashion careers on the island with surf/sport fashion brands like Quiksilver, Billabong, Converse, Roxy, Volcom, etc. that have a huge presence on island life, especially in my town which is the surf capital of the world (just ask Jack Johnson, he lives down the street). Through my experiences I've discovered that sports brands are more of a career interest to me than high-end designers, and the lifestyle I'm living here is far closer to what I want to live than a rat infested, closet sized, gray studio apartment that costs an arm, leg, and first-born child in New York City. Not for me.
Yes, I have always been this awesome, but no, I have not always been this impulsive or courageous. Having the guidance through my first international experiences I had last year with Global Experiences in Milan and studying in London had way more than a major impact on my confidence to do a move like this. Me three years ago would never believe this could be me now. I mean, seriously. I still can't even order a new item at a familiar restaurant, nevermind decide to move 5000 miles from home on a whim. Having experiences like that under my neon orange belt has definitely made me feel that I can take on so many challenges: I can navigate any airport, I can arrive in a new area and figure out how to get around on my own, I can adapt to a new environment quickly and excel in my atmosphere. And this is a skill that will translate into any job I ever get. Oh, you need me to hop a plane to China tomorrow? No problem, and yes I can figure it out on my own.
The next chapter in my adventure begins now, and it begins with a Mai Tai.
And hey, you never know when you'll get unexpectedly bumped to first class or be jumping out of a plane on a whim! Aloha!
(And, hey! Read about my previous conquests here!)