Meet our Summer Apprentices!

Meet our Summer Apprentices!

Name: Lori Matzke
Age: 21
School: University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Major: Hospitality, Restaurant, & Tourism Management with a minor in Business and Leadership & Communication
Graduation Date: May 2017

Purse & Clutch Summer Apprentices

Where were you born and where do you call home?

I was born and raised in Lincoln, NE and it has been home to me my whole life.

What are your plans after you graduate?

I would love to pursue a career in a non-profit or for-profit organization with a focus on developing sustainable jobs for individuals in developing countries.

Who are some of your fashion icons?

Ooh that’s a tough question. Some that come to mind would be Lauren Conrad, Emma Watson, and Gwyneth Paltrow.

Why are you interested in fair trade fashion?

Fair trade fashion got my attention after visiting Uganda during my senior year of high school. I saw the good that fair trade organizations were doing by producing jobs and sustainable income for parents to be able to provide for their children. It was helping keep families together and the income helped them send their children to school and invest in their own dreams. Since fashion is another one of my passions, it has been sweet to be able to tie my desire to have long-term business partnerships with artisans in developing countries to my desire to connect people with high-quality fashion products.

Apprenticeship

What countries have you visited? Which was your favorite and why?

Uganda and Canada and are the only two countries I have visited so far. Both are absolutely beautiful, the people I encountered were kind, and I would love to go back and be able to explore more of both. If I had to choose a favorite, it would be Uganda. I loved the raw joy of the people I encountered, the sights and smells, and the gorgeous environment. I loved how much I learned from the people there, how hospitable they were, and the relationships I developed. If the opportunity arose, I would go back in a heartbeat.

What have you enjoyed most about your time with P&C so far?

P&C has been great! I have loved getting to know everyone through the weekly meetings and getting to see the heart and soul behind the scenes of P & C. Each person brings a unique perspective and I have enjoyed learning different things from each of them. Jen’s weekly “lessons” are packed full with good articles and projects and she presents them in a way that is fun and relaxed. It has already taught me infinitely more about fair trade fashion and what it takes to run a business then I knew beforehand. If you’ve ever had an interest in pursuing fair trade fashion or even if you just desire to learn more about it, I would highly recommend applying to be a P & C apprentice.

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Name: Emily Nicholson
Age: 19
School: Texas Christian University
Major: Entrepreneurial Management
Graduation Date: May 2019

 Social Entrepreneur Apprentice

Where were you born and where do you call home?

I was born and raised in Overland Park, KS and am a proud Kansas City native, but when I went eight hours south for college, I got myself some boots and made myself right at home in Fort Worth, TX. I can’t wait to see where “home” will be a few years down the road. I’ve never been to Austin, but I have a feeling I could thrive there.

What are your plans after you graduate? 

I plan to apply for the Fulbright research grant and hope that it allows me to spend my years after graduation in Central or South America studying microfinance and social enterprise. I hope to then gain experience working for a social enterprise before eventually starting my own.

Who are some of your fashion icons?

Audrey Hepburn is forever the standard of perfection to me. She embodied utmost elegance and sophistication, yet still managed to remain simple. I have watched every movie of hers that has been released on Netflix, and I recommend you do the same.

Why are you interested in Fair Trade Fashion? 

I have had a heart for the developing world for as long as I can remember, and with that came a great desire to be of help, but little knowledge as to how. Then I discovered the world of Fair Trade and I was amazed at the practicality of fighting poverty in underdeveloped countries by creating sustainable job opportunities. That’s what I love about it…it’s just so practical. Everyone can be a part of it, but not enough people know about it, so I want to join the movement to encourage society to care how things are made. Every person was made for a purpose and that purpose is not to be enslaved or exploited. Fair Trade Fashion employs people, but more than that it reminds them of their purpose and helps them regain control of their lives.

Guatemala Countryside

What countries have you visited? Which was your favorite and why?

I have been to Guatemala, The Dominican Republic, and Jamaica—my favorite being Guatemala. While there, in a small town up in the mountains, I was able to volunteer at a local school and teach English and sewing classes. I was by no means a professional and taught in mostly broken Spanish, but the kids made it easy with their eagerness to learn and constant display of grace towards me. I was truly spoiled by those kids’ love.

What have you enjoyed most about your time with P&C so far?

I could talk for hours and hours about fair trade, and will to anyone who will listen, so I am grateful to have Jen and the other apprentices with whom to talk and who graciously listen to my rants. I have been challenged and weaknesses have been revealed, but I have grown as a young businesswoman and every article and assignment given to me has helped to reaffirm my passion for the world of fair trade and social enterprise.

 

July 12, 2016 by Jen Lewis
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