Auburn Family

Auburn Design Student Plans to Intern with Fashion Designer Tibi in New York

New York City is considered by most fashion enthusiasts to be a magical land where the best designers debut their work. It's where every fashion designer dreams of making it, but it's not for the faint of heart. For Paige Hawke, an Auburn University sophomore, her Big Apple dreams are becoming a reality this summer.

Hawke is a student of Auburn's apparel design program from Albany, Georgia. This summer she is moving to New York City to intern with the highly successful fashion label, Tibi.

Tibi launched in 1997 by designer Amy Smilovik, produces eleven women's wear collections per year and a full line of women's shoes. Tibi is sold worldwide in stores like Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman, Saks Fifth Avenue and Bloomingdales. According to Tibi's website, "The Tibi design team is bound together by their love of fashion that is laidback and easy but always chic and modern."

Hawke, the newest member of that design team, said that she has always been interested in fashion and that she developed an eye for design beginning in elementary school.

"I was always the diva in elementary school," Hawke said. "I broke the dress code rules while wearing my school uniforms because I hated them. I loved to carry a purse or just any accessory to make it unique."

Hawke will be interning with Tibi in the SoHo, New York office from June 22, 2015 to Aug. 7, 2015. This will be her first internship.

"I'm so excited for the opportunity to grow in my major and within myself," Hawke said. "I think it will not only be a good opportunity for my career, but also for my own growth. I'll be living in a place where I know no one, navigating a subway system so I can be at work at a full-time nine to six job everyday."

Hawke said that while she is nervous about the experience, she hopes she won't let that get in the way of her demonstrating what she has been trained to do here at Auburn. According to her, Auburn's design program can be intense. Students are required to balance numerous design classes while also completing the university core requirements.

"I always tell people the hard part about my major is balance," she said. "Students who go to design schools like Parsons and FIT, they only have classes that focus on design--there are no football games or extracurricular activities. It's hard to shift my mind from studying chemistry and American literature to some of my design classes like drawing or Photoshop."

Hawke certainly balances a fair load. In addition to her core courses and design classes, she is a member of Zeta Tau Alpha, a founding member of The Society of Collegiate Leadership and Achievement (SCLA) and Project Uplift. She also writes a blog, Styled by Hawke, that gives readers fashion advice and keeps them updated on the latest trends. 

Her advice to future Auburn apparel design students?

"Whatever you do, don't get defeated," she said. "Know that everything you are going through in this program is prepping you for your future. It might feel like you are never going to reach the level of success you are aiming for, but you will. And when you get there, it will feel so good."


**Image 1: Pictured: Hawke with her dad (Photo provided by Paige Hawke)

**Image 2: Tibi's Summer 2012 Collection (Photo via Tibi's Blog)

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