We talk to BA (Hons) Fashion Marketing student Vivian Tran about winning the WGSN competition and spending a week with the global forecasting giant at their headquarters.
Launched back in October during the Fashion Business School Summit at the Vinyl Factory, the WGSN competition asked students to pitch an idea or presentation to them in an area which they thought the forecasting giant should be targeting. The competition was set-up by LCF Careers, who worked closely with WGSN and Vivian throughout her time there. Vivian ‘blew’ the judges away and was awarded the 1st prize at the presentation, she beat MA Strategic Fashion Marketing student Lisa Niepelt and MA Fashion Journalism student Laura Coupland.
The students attended meetings with four managers at WGSN Headquarters and delivered an overview of their work. Present at the meetings were Activewear Director Clare Varga, Womenswear Director Jane Body, Menswear Director Volker Kettenis and Managing Editor Laura Cunliffe. Natalie Alexiou, Recruitment Manager at WGSN spoke to us after Vivian completed her forecasting report, she told us:
WGSN was delighted to have Vivian work with us for a week to help develop her trend report ready for it to be featured on the site. Vivian integrated well with the content teams and was a pleasure to work with. We look forward to seeing her trend report online, the first of this kind with a collaboration between WGSN and London College of Fashion.
What motivated you to enter the WGSN – LCF ‘Create Tomorrow’ competition?
As a final year student, I set some goals at the beginning of the year to focus on self-development. The past four years of university have been challenging but I wanted to push myself further and discover what I’m capable of by challenging my own limits. So, when I saw the WGSN x LCF ‘Create Tomorrow’ competition, I knew this was the perfect opportunity to grow my competitive edge. Also, who would turn down the opportunity to work for WGSN? I felt it was a great chance to expose myself inside the industry.
Can you tell us about the process you went through to win the one week prize of WGSN training and mentoring at the London HQ?
The process was very simple but I had to put a lot of work into the competition to make sure I stood out from the others. When I received the brief, I had over a month to produce a detailed report based on ‘countercultures’. After I submitted, the directors shortlisted me and I was given the opportunity to present my work at their Head Office and I knew this was the chance to show my huge interest into all things WGSN. It was a nerve-racking experience, but after I got to know the directors, I felt really relaxed and I actually enjoyed presenting. One week later I received the brilliant news that I won. Everything was planned out really well and LCF Careers helped me through this!
How has WGSN supported you over the last week in your professional development?
The WGSN team were great in supporting me throughout my time there! Being in a friendly and approachable environment gave me the confidence to engage with experienced team members and create conversations to develop my report further. They connected me to the most suitable employees to talk to and I can’t thank them enough for that. I had such an incredible experience!
What has been the outcome of this week’s experience?
I learnt how to put together a cohesive report – it takes a lot of thought to write something that can influence the industry. Also, I connected with some amazing people!
How has this experience helped you with your future career ambitions and would you recommend this type of experience to fellow students?
I now have a better insight into what forecasting consists of. I feel this is a possible area I want to tap into when I graduate because it’s exciting and fast-moving. It has definitely opened my eyes, I now look at the industry from a different perspective now. Yes! I would highly recommend this type of experience to other students. A lot of students go through a phase where they’re unsure about what they want to pursue after graduation. I feel it’s so important to gain as much experience as you can during university so you can understand your own greatest assets and capabilities. As well, sometimes you need to throw yourself into the deepend.