Senior Highlight: Mariely Payano

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Mariely Payano is a graduating Fashion Business Management student that is currently interning at Adidas, and has previously interned for Rebecca Taylor and Bloomingdale’s. Coming from Brooklyn, she grew up heavily influenced by her surroundings. In the 6th grade, she became fascinated with fashion by industry maven Lauren Conrad on the hit reality show “The Hills.” Mariely was happy to know that that you could really pursue a career in fashion, and ultimately let her to FIT.

Why did you chose to come to FIT?

“I felt like the Fashion Institute of Technology has a really good sense of opportunity. If I wanted a career in fashion, I knew that this school would allow me to work in city, which I really wanted to do.  I didn’t care for a “real college experience.” I knew FIT was going to prepare me for the future.”

How did FIT prepare you?

“The school really has a lot of connections, and you need to be willing to get out there and find the right people in order to achieve. FIT gave me a better understanding of how the industry really works, and not just the glitz and glam you see in TV.”

Do you feel you are ready for the fashion industry?

“I honestly think I am. FIT has a good emphasis on the business world, excluding fashion. I feel that I can apply these skills in everyday situations in my field. You need to have a general understanding of business… FIT is fashion focused, however it’s business savvy.”

Dorming vs. Off-Campus?

“Dorming is an obvious convenience, but commuting is also cool too. It really gives you a sense of independence, annoying, but definitely manageable with good time management and scheduling!”

How was the internship process, and how are you enjoying your internship?

“When you are sending out applications during the internship process make sure to put yourself out there as much as you can. Interning at Adidas, I really enjoy the environment. I also really love shoes now (I’m usually all about heels), but it is very interesting and I’ve learned a lot!” 

Favorite year at FIT?

“I really enjoyed Freshman year, it opened a lot of opportunities and friendships that I still have throughout my whole academic career.”

How has FIT changed you?

“I feel like I am more determined now. There is a good amount of healthy competition here so I think that it motivated me to always do my best. FIT also gave me a really good sense of the industry, and an idea for the future.”

Any regrets?

“It would have not hurt to do more internships; since it gave me a sense of what I what I like and don’t like. I’m still happy with myself and the things I stayed focused on.”

After graduation?

“I’m starting to look for a fitting career. I have a really open outlook on the opportunities that may arise. I’m kinda just going with the flow with the knowledge and skills I have learned at FIT.”

Words of Advice

“Don’t rush, even though you might want to, it goes by faster than you think! Take initiative, you never know what can happen in the long run, and who is watching. Try to be as well-rounded as possible, be involved in the school. Make the best out of your time – be present.”

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