Get to Know SPESA's Summer Intern

We have really enjoyed getting to know our summer intern, Mitchell Hurd, as he helps us out with social media, industry research, marketing, and setting up the new SPESA office, and we think you should know him too!

What school do you attend?

Mitchell Hurd: I am a senior in the Wilson College of Textiles at North Carolina State University, majoring in Fashion Textile Management with a concentration in Brand Management and Marketing and a minor in Business Administration.

What are your future career goals?

MH: I would like to work in the apparel industry, with a company like Nike or Adidas. Ideally, I think it would be cool to work with athlete/artist endorsements.

What made you want to apply for the SPESA’s internship?

MH: I had a lot of trouble finding positions that fit well with my major, and SPESA stood out to me initially when I saw that it would be textiles related. After looking at the website, I thought that it would be a good place to learn about the textile industry. Another benefit was that it was less than a mile away from my house.

What is the most interesting thing you have worked on for SPESA?

MH: I think the most interesting thing that I have worked on for SPESA was research for a Sourcing Journal article on workforce and production in the sewn products industry. It was interesting to read about the different advancements in the industry as far as production and manufacturing are concerned. I learned a lot about Industry 4.0 and the relationships built through trade agreements that affect the productivity of manufacturers in different countries.

What is the worst thing we have made you do?

MH: The worst thing I had to do was edit the name/address for each individual member in SPESA's database. It wasn’t difficult, but it was certainly tedious.

What is something you have learned from this internship?

MH: The textiles industry changes a lot, continuously. Fast fashion is one thing, but there are constantly new machines and software being released that improve speed and efficiency. It would be difficult and expensive for one manufacturer to stay on top with every machine, so it is better for the apparel companies to diversify their producer for each different product, and always keep an eye out for the fastest, most efficient machine. I think if more manufacturers adopt the subscription service that Gerber Technology has started to do, it could change a lot about the functionality of the industry, but could also limit innovation.

What is something that surprised you about this internship?

MH: The amount of productive work that I am able to do. There are definitely some mindless, tedious tasks here and there, but for the most part, the work is educational and beneficial to developing important skills such as research and social media practices.

What advice do you have for future interns?

MH: Take advantage of the resources that the University provides you with, there is a lot of information. Also, to get the most out of it, read everything that you come across during work that seems relevant to what you are interested in. It takes up more time, but there are a lot of interesting things that you will not learn about through classes that are relevant to the industry, and it is most likely information that would be good for SPESA to know anyways.

Thanks Mitchell!

If you are a student interested in interning with SPESA or you are a SPESA member and know someone who would make a good SPESA intern, please contact Michael McDonald.