Fashon design via satellite

Leslie Gray

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Eight of WIU’s best designing women presented their summer internship presentations to students and faculty of the University of North Texas via satellite at Friday’s Fashion Merchandising Summer 1998 Internship Seminar.The students interned at some of the premier companies in the world, including Eddie Bauer, Express Inc., Sports Style Magazine and McDonald’s Corporation. Two students, Stephanie Bartels and Michelle Piraino, studied fashion and design at the Paris Fashion Institute in France. Bartels and Piraino attended fashion shows featuring top-notch designers as well as students and even met famous designers such as Cerrutti.

The video conference was held in Horrabin Hall 45 in the Telecommunications Center. The room has the most advanced technology for video conferencing such as “Elmo,” which allows a person and objects such as photographs, PowerPoint presentations and videotapes to be broadcast via satellite.

One of the presenters, department of family and consumer sciences graduate Michelle Aschinger, did her internship at Eddie Bauer. “I chose Eddie Bauer because I wear their clothes,” Aschinger said. She also explained how the responsibilities differ from working in a large store such as the Oak Brook, Ill., flagship store where she did her internship, to the smaller Eddie Bauer store she manages at Stratford Square in Bloomingdale, Ill.

Blake Billings, also a family and consumer sciences graduate, did her internship at Sports Style Magazine. The magazine is published by Fairchild Publication, which also publishes JANE magazine. Billings oversaw layouts and photoshoots and selected models for the layouts and photoshoots. Billings also attended a Nautica fashion show.

The seminar was coordinated by the department of family and consumer sciences.

Sharon Pate, fashion intern and textile professor, got involved in the program last year when she taught at the University of North Texas. A colleague was the fashion intern coordinator at WIU.

“I thought it would be a good idea to do an exchange so they (Texas) could see what our students were doing,” Pate said.

Pate feels the program is very good, and she loves the technology. “I think it is a fabulous experience for these students. What’s great about Western is that these students are not just here, they go everywhere. The students in the Dallas market usually just stay right there so they don’t get the full experience,” Pate said.

Charlene Callison, family and consumer sciences department chair, also feels the satellite presentation is good for the department.

“Before, we (the faculty) just did presentations for all of our students. I think the students here and at North Texas got a good view of what the retail world is about,” Callison said.

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