This week, Precollege Programs had the opportunity to speak with FIT undergraduate student and Precollege alum, Claudia Huerta. Claudia, who hails from Queens NY, completed her AAS in Fashion Merchandising Management at FIT and is expected to graduate in January 2013 with her BS in International Trade and Marketing.
Claudia is a member of ITSA (International Trade Student Association) and has worked as an intern at Continental Reliance Group Global Licensing, a Visual Merchandiser at Banana Republic, a Catalog Fulfillment at Bloomingdale’s, and an Assistant to Designer for Quinn New York Inc. She is also a recipient of the BRAG Scholarship for Academic Excellence, was on the Dean’s List 2009-2012 for FMM and ITM, and is currently a contender for the Harold Sachs International Practicum Scholarship.
Courses taken in Precollege Programs:
Precollege Programs: What is your fondest memory of Precollege Programs?
Claudia: My first Precollege Program class was Fabric Styling, which I ended up deciding I didn’t like. During the middle of the semester I broke my wrist and still had to present my fabric styling board. I did the best I could cutting fabric with one hand and such, I was terrified the day of our final presentation that the professor would not give me a good grade because the cutting was sloppy. I felt so relieved and content when she calmly explained that yes, breaking my wrist was no excuse to not do the coursework, but she was fine with my not being able to cut cleanly. It taught me just how important it is to communicate with professors (who, yes, can be intimidating). In that same class, I met my friend Ashley Clemmings, who I am still close to. Precollege gives you the opportunity to go into college with friends.
Precollege Programs: At what moment did you decide FIT was your college of choice?
Claudia: I was 11 when my cousins from Spain. They took my little sister and me to the FIT Museum. The moment I walked in, saw those amazing outfits, and saw that the people who actually made these things COULD GO TO SCHOOL(!) to learn how to do it…that was the moment when I decided that FIT was for me. Later on when applying to colleges I looked into Parsons, LIM, FIDM, Art Institute and the likes but I didn’t feel the same connection. FIT had really made an impact on me.
Precollege Programs: What advantages did you gain from Precollege courses?Are there any specific learned traits from your days as a Precollege student that really hit home with you?
Claudia: I was introduced to a lot of faculty who were familiar with me once I became an undergraduate student as a result of my taking Precollege classes. I had an official transcript that I showed everyone who looked at my application just to illustrate how interested and dedicated I was to FIT. because of Precollege Programs, I learned the value of working hard and proving yourself to professors. You will eventually need faculty recommendations and their advice, and you will want to be in their favor. Being mediocre doesn’t cut it at FIT. There will always be so much help and support, but so much of your success is determined by YOU and the alliance with your professors.
Precollege Programs: How is college different than you previously imagined back when you were in high school?
Claudia: First and foremost, college in NYC is a unique experience. It is not your movie experience. Second, you will meet very different people. You will learn respect for diversity and enjoy it. Overall, my Precollege classes really prepared for the environment and workload.
Precollege Programs: What advice do you have for Precollege students?
Claudia: Take a lot of Precollege classes! This is your chance to test majors before you even pay full tuition! Test it all out!!!