Monday, November 23, 2009

Success: The Seminar

Friday, November 20, 2009:
The Illinois Institute of Art-Chicago presented the "Student Success Seminar" to further prepare students for their future careers in the fashion industry. The seminar was perfectly guided by the wonderful Mr. Richard Petrizzi. As a professor at ILIA, Mr. P is an inspiring individual with an attitude so positive, he can raise you out of a homework meltdown with just a smile.

The day began with an introduction by Pat Giller and Jill Hinrichs from Career Services offering guidance and assistance in helping us to shape our careers. They were followed by a panel of current students speaking about their internships at some of Chicago's most exciting companies. Sherry Roath spoke about producing fashion shows and handling aspects of marketing at Water Tower Place. Jessica DeGolyer shared her experience with GenArt, a company that strives to give a voice to emerging designers and artists. I spoke about my time at Michigan Avenue Magazine as an intern for the editor-in-chief, working with many other fantastic interns and industry professionals.

The panel was followed by some inspiration from instructors Dan Robison, Shireen Musa and personal mentor of mine, Sandra Henderson-Williams. They shared their insights on the industry and how their careers were shaped. (They also made us laugh quite a bit.) Later, Michael Johnson shared his top tips for staying sharp in the job market and Richard Petrizzi made us think deeper. (He also reminded us of all the fantastic acronyms he uses.)

Mr. P, you're FABE.

Mr. P and his bag of fantastic prizes:

After lunch, a panel of industry professionals joined the seminar to share stories and answer questions. David Ginople (owner of Store B), Troy Parrish (Visual Manager at Gap on Michigan Avenue), Beatrice Moore (sales and visuals for Gap), Kevin Sullivan (owner, Kevin Sullivan Events), Sandra Henderson-Williams (instructor at three of the city's top art colleges, former Senior Buyer for Sears), Lidia Wachowska (ILIA instructor with a background in academia) and Barbara Glass (Image and Wardrobe Consultant, contributing NBC5 reporter and blog writer of

The seminar wrapped up with a clever speech from Mr. P and the students and professionals had some time to network and learn more about each other. I got the chance to meet some some fantastic fellow students and was able to share with them my experiences and successes as I approach graduation. With only one official day left* at Michigan Avenue Magazine and less than four weeks of school, I find myself diving quickly into the unknown.

Which is just fine by me.


*I will may come back to Michigan Avenue Magazine for a day or two a week. :)

Dan Robison schools us on Team Work:

Michael Johnson gets us ready to interview:

Back: Kevin Sullivan, Barbara Glass, Sandra Henderson-Williams,
Lidia Wachowska

Front: Troy Parrish, Beatrice Moore, David Ginople

Two of my very favorite people, looking gorgeous!
Barbara Glass and Sandra Henderson-Williams:

Myself with one of my best buds, Barbara Glass:


Lynne Jordan said...

what a wonderful seminar!! I even knew people (Kevin - just did an event with him for AIBI) Don't worry about the unknown. It sounds like school has you all connected.

Ryan M. Beshel said...

Things are going well, yes!
Loved being a part of the Seminar.
Was so much fun, and as you know, those are some of the best people around!

Thanks for checking this out!


Emily said...

Thank you for coming and sharing your experiences with us! I am now an official Ryan and Barbara blog reader! The seminar was so great and motivational. I appreciate you taking time out of your busy schedule to do it!

Thanks again,
Emily Ekern

twodons96 said...

Everything sounds so exciting and professional. That is a nice photo of you and Barbara Glass. Come home! MOM

Ryan M. Beshel said...


It was such an honor to be there! I'm glad you had a great time--thanks for reading the blog, and thanks for reading Barbara's also! I know we both appreciate the support..



Ryan M. Beshel said...

Thanks Mom!
I'll be home for turkey soon!

Love you!


Anonymous said...

Your writing and para phrasing continues to make me proud...remember, writing does not have to be your livelyhood, it can just be your life! Like my singins! it adds to all the other talents you have and make a very attractive package! you are a wonder and i can not wait for you to be the speaker at your graduation...come on, do they really have anyone else as interesting as you and as passionate, willing to share? i thaink not! right? love a.m.