On Thursday, Sept. 14, the fashion marketing and merchandising staff and students of Sacred Heart University (SHU) embarked on a visit to Mitchell’s, located in Westport, Connecticut.
“Exploring the store’s interior and getting to see the merchandise collection was amazing. We were taken downstairs to witness the intricate workings that keep the store running seamlessly,” said sophomore Katie Torello.
Mitchell’s is a family-owned designer clothing brand, founded by Ed and Norma Mitchell in 1958. According to Mitchell’s, the heart of their vision is to “hug” the customer by enhancing and adding value to their retail experience. Mitchell’s has earned a reputation for excellence in the fashion retail industry, and they have received numerous awards and recognitions for its commitment to customer service and quality.
On the field trip, students and staff walked through displays of designer goods, learned about the brand’s operations, and participated in mock interviews.
“The idea was to get students face-time and allow them to have a meaningful interaction with fashion executives in more of a business context,” said Prof. David P. Loranger of fashion marketing and merchandising.
Jessica Candido, a senior at SHU and the president of Fashion Club, gained a wealth of knowledge from her experience at Mitchell’s.
“Mitchell’s was a true eye-opener. Touring their luxury store was like stepping into a fashion dreamland. This day reinforced my passion for fashion and the importance of presentation and communication skills in this field,” said Candido.
As president of Fashion Club, Candido assisted in putting this field trip together. Her job as president is to oversee and execute all of the events and meetings in the club.
“It was also incredibly rewarding to see the excitement on the faces of the girls as they walked into the store, knowing I helped put this event together,” said Candido.
On the tour, the students and staff walked through displays of carefully curated designer goods and learned about Mitchells’ clientele. They had the opportunity to hear about the operations needed to run eight Mitchell’s stores around the country in areas such as buying, accounting, sales, security, and marketing. Towards the end of the experience, Mitchell’s hosted mock interviews with four volunteer students. The associates placed strong emphasis on transforming the interview into a genuine conversation. Arbesa Krasniqi, a junior at SHU, actively engaged in the mock
interview sessions. “The mock interviews were an amazing learning experience,” said Krasniqi. “Scott Mitchell, one of the owners, gave us some insight onto why different interviewers would ask certain questions.”
Krasniqi’s favorite part of the tour was understanding the fundamentals of Mitchell’s.
“The owner spoke to us about how important their sales team was, and how they prioritized their customers,” Krasniqi said. Taking advantage of opportunities like this is essential for both gaining valuable experience and enhancing one’s resume. One way to get involved with fashion at SHU and to gain experiences like this is to join the Fashion Club.
Throughout the school year, Fashion Club discusses current trends as to where fashion is heading. They engage in activities such as DIY, mood boards, as well as host guest speakers from the industry. Their internship panel assists members in gaining experience and furthering their interest within all the opportunities for jobs and internships.
“Becoming a part of the Fashion Club has significantly expanded my chances to engage more deeply with my major. I always try to seek out every available opportunity to gain valuable experience,” said Torello.
Fashion Club meetings are every Wednesday and open to all full-time undergraduate students. One way to stay updated with the SHU Fashion Club is to follow their Instagram @fashionclub_shu.