Working inside the headquarters of Louis Vuitton is a dream for many high fashion fans. Yet this was a reality for Chloe Granger, where she completed a six-month internship, funded by Erasmus+.
The University of Bath student interned as an assistant fragrance press officer, working at the fashion house’s headquarters in Paris. “I always knew I wanted to spend a year abroad,” said Chloe.
“I’ve always been passionate about French luxury goods and was determined to find a placement in the industry, so I could broaden my perspective and create lifetime goals. I wanted to gain first-hand experience in a company that I love.”
The internship gave Chloe a real hands-on experience as she could get involved in all aspects of public relations (PR). She explained: “I was responsible for updating press reviews with any product appearances and keeping a close watch on all media outlets.
“I sent out samples both nationally and internationally, liaising with PR agencies and international Louis Vuitton colleagues about their stock. I also kept tabs on stock and completed internal orders to replenish as needed.
“It was exactly how I dreamed the experience would be; the glamour, excitement and atmosphere were truly incredible. Walking through the large, glass doors every morning and being greeted by the latest Louis Vuitton display was exhilarating.”
One of Chloe’s highlights was the press day for the launch of Louis Vuitton’s new fragrance: “I helped with the preparation for the event, but I didn’t realise how involved I would be in the actual execution.
“I was responsible for greeting the journalists, influencers and other invitees and presenting the new fragrance to them - I felt like I had a significant part to play in the running of the event and I was in complete shock that I was given so much responsibility!”
Personal and professional skills development
Whilst initially feeling out of depth as the only British intern during her placement, Chloe soon found she was strengthening her language skills and independence: “I loved the perspective it gave me.
“It did take me some time to get comfortable with speaking French and I definitely made some mistakes along the way, but the support and understanding from my managers got me through it and helped me come out of my shell.”
“For example, I couldn’t participate in the back and forth ‘banter’ as my brain simply couldn’t keep up and formulate appropriate responses. However, I listened closely to those around me and picked up little phrases and anecdotes from them, because I was able to comprehend the situation, context and even the delivery of the words.
“I would then practise it when I spoke to my intern friends, and it was incredible to make a joke in French and actually receive laughter in response.”
My year abroad has genuinely had a profound impact on my life and if I could do it all over again, I would in a heartbeat.
In addition, Chloe was able to develop and refine skills essential for working in PR, such as communication, organisational and interpersonal skills. She adds: “On a personal level, my confidence dramatically improved both with my language and self-worth. I began to realise that I’m capable of facing challenges and undertaking things that seem so out of reach in my own head.”
Chloe’s experience has strengthened her career ambitions. “I’ve known for a while that I want to work in luxury goods,” she said. “But this experience has cemented my desire to work with fragrance and continue down the avenue of press and PR.
“I hope that this internship will equip me with the right, relevant experience to continue my career. I’ve been able to cultivate relationships with people in the industry both in France and all over the world and I hope I will be able to cross paths with them again in the future.”
She now encourages other students to study or work abroad: “It’s one of very few ways in life that you can broaden your perspective of the world and to truly learn things about yourself. My year abroad has genuinely had a profound impact on my life and if I could do it all over again, I would in a heartbeat.”
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