By: Zita Quezada, M.B.A. Candidate, Berkeley College
When I first started Berkeley College, I knew from the start that it was the right choice for me. Everything felt right, and I’ve learned as I’ve matured that that’s how everything in life should feel. I loved the atmosphere and how “homey” it felt when I first walked in. I knew the staff and I was always treated with respect. My professors were exceptional, semester after semester. Berkeley College not only provided me with the greatest education, it provided me with life long connections, which are extremely important today. My undergrad years at Berkeley College were the greatest, most evolving four years of my life. The only advice I would give to myself then would be to enjoy it more, learn how to relax, and pay more attention to the important things because everything works out in the end – it always does.
During my undergrad, I participated in the Paramus Fashion Club, the Berkeley Bold Magazine, in fashion shows, in Berkeley photo shoots that are still floating around campus (which to this day I still get complimented and recognized for), and I even had the amazing opportunity to participate in a Berkeley College commercial. I would encourage current or prospective Berkeley students to not be afraid to reach out if they ever have anything they need from the school. There are so many opportunities out there and all you have to do is ASK! Within reason, everything I wanted to do I was able to during my undergrad at Berkeley.
I graduated from Berkeley College in May of 2016 and, just like most new graduates, I had no idea what to do. I had this wonderful Bachelor’s Degree in Fashion Merchandising and Management and new knowledge and skills but still – I didn’t know where to begin with my career in fashion. I decided to take the summer off to travel and enjoy myself. I knew that I loved traveling, but I’ve always been the type of person that needed to stay busy and keep my brain constantly expanding. This is when I decided to send in my application for Berkeley College’s M.B.A in Management. Remember those lifelong connections I was talking about? Two of the greatest professors I had during my undergrad at Berkeley College wrote recommendation letters for me and, along with my wonderful undergrad transcript, I was accepted into the Master’s program.
At this point, I had something going for myself, but I was still applying to full-time jobs in the fashion industry. I went on many interviews for jobs that weren’t for someone with credentials like me, someone that was right out of college, but I knew what I was capable of because of what I had learned at Berkeley. I continued to apply, but was turned away numerous times because I was too young, I was a new graduate, and this would be my first real corporate job.
I finally went on an interview and again, just like the first day walking in for my undergrad, everything just felt right – I knew this was where I wanted to be. I went on multiple interviews and during my last interview, the Vice President of Merchandising asked me if I had someone she could call as a recommendation. I didn’t hesitate for a moment before giving her one of my Berkeley College fashion professors, one of the greatest fashion instructors I ever had. That same day, I got a phone call and I was told that after a wonderful conversation with my previous fashion professor she was assured that I was the right candidate. I got the job because of a Berkeley College professor and this was the job I really wanted and knew I belonged in. I am now a full-time Berkeley College Master’s student and a full-time e-Commerce site Merchandise Administrator for Swimstyle.com and Sportystyle.com. I am truly enjoying life after my undergrad and I am excited, but in no rush, to see what life after grad school will be like. I know, if it’s anything like my undergrad, that I’m in store for something amazing.