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Meet former intern: Allison Lealiou ’19

Headshot of Allison Leailou.Major: Textiles & Fashion Design

“I always knew I wanted to be a designer because that’s where I’ve always felt the happiest and most creative,” Lealiou says. She describes the Textiles & Fashion Design program as incredibly collaborative, never competitive. “By graduation, we all felt ready for the next step. The UW did a great job preparing us.”


Internship Experience: Before her senior year, Lealiou hadn’t considered where she might intern. She placed in a coat design competition sponsored through a School of Human Ecology/Lands’ End partnership and wound up interning in the Lands’ End accessories department, doing everything from sketching to crafting tech packs. “It was very immersive,” she says. “School is great for giving you a baseline, and then the internship is the deep dive.”

Lealiou admits the internship requirement pushed her to try something she might not have otherwise considered. “At the time, I just wasn’t thinking about how important this experience would turn out to be.”

Current Position: Assistant Designer at Lands’ End

A few months after graduation, a position opened up in the same department and Lealiou was hired on the spot, having a left a positive impression on her coworkers as an intern. “The only reason I have this job is because of my internship, which I got because I went to UW-Madison and placed in the coat contest! You have to make connections, meet people and prove yourself.”

Advice for Current Students: “Consider a bigger company where they already have a structure in place and things for you to do. My network now is the cohort of people I interned with. Talk to anyone who will give you time and ask about their career path. And if you find out you don’t like what you’re doing, try something else.”