AROUND TOWN: Jessica Ballas

President of the Fashion Student Organization. Senior co-producer of the Fashion School’s Annual Fashion Show. Voted top merchandising student of her senior class. All of these titles are held by the one and only Jessica Ballas. This Fashionista made her mark on Kent State University and this summer she’s about to start her new chapter in New York City! I had a chance to meet up with Jess to gain her best advice for success after graduation.

Name: Jessica Ballas

Role: Fashion Merchandising Graduate

CollegeFashionista: What was the highlight of your senior year of college?

Jessica Ballas: With being President of the Fashion Student Organization and senior producer of the Fashion School’s Annual Fashion Show it is hard to pick one. I think traveling to NYC with FSO was such a highlight; I was able to share my love of the city and within that, my experiences that lead me to loving it with our members! With FS2, the Awards Show was such an amazing memory. I loved getting to work with such amazing and talented students along with the Fashion School director J.R. Everything was a dream.

CF: What most excites you about starting your next chapter this summer in NYC at Randa Accessories?

JB: I can’t even begin to explain my excitement about moving to NYC permanently and having a job in my field. I am mostly excited for all of the opportunities that Randa & NYC offer. When I interned there, I learned so much in such a short amount of time and volunteered to do anything. I think the positive impression that I left Randa with is something they will remember when I begin there full time and hopefully lead to bigger and better things within the company.

CF: What is your biggest word of advice for other Fashionistas hoping to get a job in NYC directly after graduation?

JB: Network! There are so many ways to talk to NYC professionals besides looking their website up and connecting through there. I’ve been a big fan of LinkedIn, alumni books at my university, talking to professors to see who they know in the industry and best yet, interning! My internship, which I completed the summer going into senior year, landed me my full time position after graduation. My last day at Randa, they informally offered me a position and it was the biggest stress relief going into senior year not having to worry about the entire job process! 

CF: What are three pieces in your closet that you cannot wait to breakout this season?

JB: I would say a few of the must-have pieces in my wardrobe right now include a crisp white shirt from Urban Outfitters, a pair of boyfriend jeans from Necessary Clothing in NYC and some sunnies from Free People!

Learn More: Checkout Jess’s website to keep up with her upcoming journeys!