Connections to large companies regularly help students at Abilene Christian University land internships and roles to further their careers.
Devon Grey (’23) started as a remote graphic design intern at Lands’ End this summer and is now a full-time associate graphic designer for the company.
Grey graduated in May with a Bachelor of Science degree in graphic design and advertising. As he weighed his options post-graduation, the opportunity at Lands’ End arose. He applied and quickly had three interviews with the company before securing the role.
“This is huge because I’ve done a bunch of little freelance jobs for small businesses, but this is my first corporate job,” Grey said. “Lands’ End is a pretty well-known company and to be able to say that I have a graphic design internship through them is going to boost me a lot.”
As a part of his role, Grey assisted the company in their digital and print design teams, including layout and design for the corporate magazine and content for social media platforms.
“This job is definitely more just straight graphic design,” Grey said. “All my past internships were about content creation, but not just graphic design. So this one is just more specific to my field.”
ACU networking helps Grey land role
Prior connections at ACU helped Grey find and secure the job. Trevon Hardy (’23) was an intern at Lands’ End in the summer of 2022 and subsequently took on a role as a campus brand ambassador coordinator, a position he pitched to his employers.
“ACU is just really good at putting a lot of faith in their students,” Hardy said. “Just being able to say, ‘We trust you, go do what you need to do.’”
In his internship, Hardy coordinated business resource groups that hosted events for diverse groups of employees, and he assisted with recruiting and hiring efforts. Now as a Campus Brand Ambassador Coordinator, he helps to strengthen networks with diverse communities and tailor their recruiting efforts to these communities. Based on his knowledge of the recruitment process at Lands’ End, Hardy sent the graphic design internship application to Gray.
“We went through the process, and the hiring managers absolutely loved him,” Hardy said.
Each semester, graphic design and advertising majors review their work with their professors. In these meetings, students analyze their portfolio, study what other designers are up to, learn how to market themselves for the future and use design language to elevate their status in interviews.
“I would say that definitely prepared me to talk to employers,” Grey said. “I wasn’t nervous at all, and I’m able to speak about my work in a way that is compelling for somebody to want me to work for them.”
Grey said creating and establishing connections with Hardy and others helped him be equipped for this role, and he is confident the experience will elevate his future career as a graphic designer.
Learn more about the Department of Art and Design.
— Connor Mullins
Aug. 23, 2023