Internship helps Crayne gain confidence in fashion industry

A collage of photos. Two of Carter Crayne working during his internship, and the other three are of apparel warehouses and equipment.

Internship helps Crayne gain confidence in fashion industry

22 Aug 2023    

Meet Carter Crayne, a senior merchandising major from Minnetonka, Minnesota. Carter has spent is final summer before graduation in Los Angeles, California, completing an internship with Noble & Ready, an apparel development and fashion production company. Check out what he had to say about this hands-on learning experience, and his advice to students considering an internship in the future. 

What made you interested in this internship?  

Throughout my college summers interning in Chicago, I developed a deep fascination with the inner workings of the apparel and fashion production. My early work experiences in the screen printing industry further solidified this interest and I give a lot of credit to the Campus Ink Student Design Program. However, I knew it was time to step out of my comfort zone and seek opportunities in more prominent fashion hubs like New York or California. Funny enough, I contacted my current boss through an Instagram DM, marking the beginning of this exciting journey.   

How were you able to connect what you’ve learned in classrooms to what you did this summer? 

In the lane of apparel production, I find my work divided almost equally into two parts. Roughly 50% of my daily responsibilities revolve around visiting various vendors like sewing houses, dye houses, and finishing houses in southern Los Angeles (Vernon, Compton, etc.).  The remaining 50% is spent in the office, where my education becomes instrumental in preparing me for success in this industry. During the initial phase of the summer, I accompanied my managers on visits to various vendors. They took the time to mentor me on communicating confidently with the seamstresses and ensuring that the products met the highest quality standards. As time passed, they trusted me to handle these vendor visits independently. I must admit, in the beginning, it felt a bit intimidating. However, as weeks went by, my confidence grew, and I became more at ease driving around the area to different vendors, even though my car was/is often filled to the brim with bags of garments (admittedly, not the safest thing to do). 

What have you learned during your summer internship that will help you as you move forward in your academic career and beyond? 

Observing and learning from the industry leaders, I've been striving to emulate their level of confidence. Being fortunate enough to work alongside these accomplished professionals has provided me with firsthand experience into their client interactions and stress management techniques, especially considering their demanding schedules, spanning all seven days of the week. Witnessing their approach has been genuinely inspiring for me. I feel immensely grateful for the opportunity to contribute to some remarkable projects that I will truly never forget about. 

What advice would you give to students considering a summer internship in the future? 

When you find yourself losing inspiration in your job search, consider visioning in your head how you could contribute to the success of the exciting brands you follow on social media. I think it’s really important to make a note that when applying for internships online, you're competing against numerous candidates. However, if you can proactively reach out to a company and make a detailed plan of how you can become an invaluable asset for their success, your main competition will be with your own capabilities and potential. Get creative with it. 

College of Education and Human Sciences
Textiles, Merchandising & Fashion Design