Cocktails with Claire Testimonial: So Much Can Change In a Year When You Don't Let Roadblocks Stop You

Happy Monday!

This Monday is a bit different!  While I could write about my outfits this weekend, or a regular recap of Cocktails with Claire & Ty Hunter, I’m not. I have a testimony on my heart that I want to share.

I shared a tweet on Saturday telling a story of how I was upset last Fall because I couldn’t attend Cocktails with Claire a year ago due to school. I wanted to come up to New York so bad, and my mother told me it made no sense because finals were coming up and I was returning home for winter break shortly after.

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I cried! I cried real tears, I wanted to be there so bad. This was around the time that being at Hampton was taking a toll on me because I wasn’t able to be in New York doing what I wanted to do. However, who knew that in a year so much would change. This past Saturday, not only did I attend CWC, but I worked BTS, attended a dinner with Claire and the team, and I collaborated to write a recap for Fashion Bomb Daily- check it out here!

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If I learned anything, it’s that sometimes God will block something or close a door to see how willing you are to work for what you want. I could’ve easily given up on meeting Claire or ever even attending a Cocktails with Claire event, but I didn’t! I asked to attend last year, it was blocked and now a year later the blessings poured in way beyond my expectations.

I love to inspire others through my journey, and I hope this story can truly do that for someone. Plant your seeds, harvest them, and when it blossoms be ready. I’m in complete awe of how much has changed. It’s proven to me that when you speak something, it can become your reality. One of my closest friends Marshea wrote on her blog last week saying, “There's power in your thoughts, words, actions and efforts, so be cautious of how you use them. If you believe you can't accomplish something, you won't and if you only speak in darkness, you'll never see the light.” This quote stuck with me for a few reasons, and this weekend made it clear why. When I let my thoughts, actions, and words be on one positive accord and truly believed I could accomplish things, I did and it exceeded my expectations.

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I hope this story can inspire anyone who may be disappointed in a roadblock, be reminded that when you don’t sulk over it and you work hard things will work in your favor. I saw so many girls eager to take selfies with Claire and all I could think of was that I used to be that girl trying to take a selfie. I'm so grateful. Remember your position can change a few months from now, even a few weeks! Just don't give up, please!

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I celebrated this weekend’s success at brunch on Sunday! Thanks to DaVaugn for my beat face all throughout the weekend! See pics below, I’ve been getting a lot of questions about this coat it’s from last year Forever 21. My shoes are by House No. 3028, stay tuned for my interview with the designer later this week. My hair is by Silk Indian Hair, it's a closure and I absolutely love it. Use code FALL20 for 20% off of 2 or more bundles! 

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Xoxo,

Asia Milia

Review of Cocotique Anniversary Box + Interview With Founder Dana Hill

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I am no stranger to subscription boxes, so I know a good one when I see it! If you've been following me for a while then you know that when I was an ESSENCE Magazine College Ambassador a lot of my role was representing their beauty box. When they discontinued it I was at a loss, I didn't know of a brand that had monthly boxes curated for African-American women like myself. Shortly after, I was introduced to Cocotique. They've been sending me their boxes for a few months and some of my absolute favorite beauty products I've discovered from their box. 

The most recent products I received were from their 4-year anniversary box themed to celebrate YOU and your unique magic. Right up my alley! My favorite products were the Make Up Forever Ultra HD Foundation which perfectly stayed on my face during my vacation throughout the day in the Vegas sun, and partying all through the night. 

The skincare products kept me feeling amazing, especially the body bar and foot balm which had my skin super soft! COCOTIQUE knows what it is doing when it comes to catering to African-American women and their beauty needs whether it be hair, skin, or even nails. Who's the boss behind it all?! Dana Hill! I had the chance to chat with Dana and get a little insight on what it's like to be the girl boss of COCOTIQUE! 

Asia Milia: What inspired you to be your own boss and launch Cocotique? 

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Dana Hill: Working for myself allows me to be in control of my destiny, which is a major motivating force and is what drives me to be my own boss. COCOTIQUE was born out of necessity.  Being a big beauty product fanatic, I subscribed to various subscription services, but was fed up with not receiving products tailored to my specific beauty concerns for WOC [women of color].  Out of my frustration, I developed the idea for COCOTIQUE.  

AMW: What challenges have you faced? 

DH: I would say some of the biggest challenges have been obtaining funding to help scale and managing a work/life balance. 

AMW: What is your favorite part of being an entrepreneur? 

DH: Being able to realize your dreams and to wake up every morning blessed to do what you love. 

AMW: I know that this anniversary box is about "celebrating YOU and your unique magic," can you tell me a little bit about why you chose that as this year's anniversary box theme? 

DH: I want women to realize their worth and their inherent beauty.  Despite what the media tries to define what is beautiful, we all have a special light inside of us to share.  I encourage women to shine bright and to recognize that their beauty flows from the inside out.  Your unique magic is what’s inside you and what makes you truly beautiful.

AMW: What's next for COCOTIQUE? 

DH: We’re working on doing more events in 2018, and of course introducing more new brands to my subscribers. To date we’ve worked with over 175 brands!

To all my girl bosses and aspiring girl bosses, take a tip of two from Dana she is thriving and so is her brand! Subscribe to COCOTIQUE here! It'll make the perfect gift for the holidays, as well! The gift that keeps on giving. 

It is my goal to bring you more interviews from successful entrepreneurs in fashion, beauty, health, and more! If you have anyone specific you'd love to hear from, let me know girl bosses! 

Xoxo, 

Asia Milia

ESSENCE Festival 2017: Taking Risks and Taking Advantage of Opportunity

Essence Festival and NOLA was absolutely amazing. It has probably been my favorite trip of 2017 and that says a lot. This year has been teaching me all about risks. Some of you might remember back in February when I took 2 weeks off of school in my last semester of my senior year to work fashion week. Well, Essence Festival was a risk too, in a very different way.

I have some amazing mentors who have watched me grow from an Essence College Ambassador to a college graduate chasing my dreams. I have been asking them for a few months about working the festival, and I found out exactly a week prior that I could work it. There I was, sitting on my bed and wondering how I would get there and where I would stay. All of the logistics came into play. 

I slept on it and woke up the next morning and I came to the decision that I just wasn’t going to go. I spoke with my big sister from Hampton and she asked me, "If you don’t go, are you going to wonder what it would have been like?" That question there made up my mind. I knew that if I didn’t go I would be looking at it on social media all week regretting my decision. 

I found a reasonable flight and booked it. Then, I needed a hotel. One of my social media friends (yes, those exist and I love them) was going and didn’t have a room yet. She actually won my book giveaway a few months ago and she’s supported me from the beginning. We talked it over and booked a room together. A day before we took off, one of my friends that I worked at Hot 97 with found out she was also working and she ended up rooming with us. 

There we were. 3 girls, who had never travelled together staying together in NOLA and working. Some of you might think I'm crazy for that. But, sometimes we do crazy things when we're hungry for opportunity. It was the best experience ever! Every night it was a group of 4, we partied with Kayline, one of my mentor’s nieces. We all were there to work, but play just as hard. We hit Bourbon Street, ate beignets, had daiquiris all night long and networked our behinds off!

I say all of this to say, if you’re thinking twice about doing something that will be beneficial to you, DO IT! I don’t know if I’ve ever been that happy. Take risks. Do what makes you happy. You may be broke when you get back. You may not know anyone at all. Make new friends. Grind. Lastly, never be afraid to ask for an opportunity that you know will be beneficial to your growth and career.

Thank you DaVaugn, Nialah and Kayline for making my first Essence Festival amazing. And, thank you to the team I worked with who trusted me with tasks that I didn’t know how I would handle, but I did. I’m so grateful for this experience, and thank you to my readers who have been supporting me along my journey.

FYI — I was featured in 3 Essence articles during the festival and I was their 'Look of the Day' on their Snapchat Discover Story! Find the articles here:

1. The Street Style Looks That Took ESSENCE Festival 2017 By Storm

2. Girls Trip! These Ladies Are Living it Up At ESSENCE Festival 2017

3. These Curvy Ladies Gave Us Epic Street Style Moments at ESSENCE Festival 2017

See some of my NOLA trip photos below!

 

P.U.L.S.E. In The City Presents Empower Her: A Brunch & Networking Event

Hey, hey girl bosses!
 

On July 15, I am speaking on my second panel and this time it's in New York! I'll be speaking on empowering women, my fitness journey, branding, and all of that good stuff! If you are interested in attending you can buy tickets here

The early bird price is $10 and general admission is $15. They also have add-on mimosa prices starting at $7. Did I mention you get to network AND it includes a brunch?! Buy your tickets before they sell out and I hope to see some of my readers there!  

Appreciating the Setbacks

My first week back in New York after graduation I was so excited to be back, send my emails out, network, continue applying to jobs, and just be great. But, that's the last thing that happened. The day before graduation, my laptop charger broke and the day I returned to New York I had 55% on my laptop. My MacBook has been running on it's last leg for the past few months, so that 55% naturally lasted about an hour because my computer moves so slow. This is when it hit, I couldn't just text someone on campus or in my apartment complex and ask to borrow a charger. 

I didn't want to buy a new charger and waste money because I knew that one of my graduation gifts (a new laptop) was coming mid-June. I felt like a bum. I worked out everyday, but I would come home and just be on my phone. My boyfriend and my friends told me that I was being forced to relax, and I deserved that time after 4 years of grinding. But, Asia Milia doesn't know what that is. 

This is Rosé. Yes, I named her. Yes, it's pronounced like the champagne. 

This is Rosé. Yes, I named her. Yes, it's pronounced like the champagne. 

Thankfully, because of my amazing mother, instead of mid-June, I got my new laptop. She's my baby, I named her Rosé and the day I got her blessings started falling in my lap. Email responses I was waiting on, meetings started to commence, it was crazy. 

I feel reborn with Rosé, now I can type up articles in my old timing instead of waiting 30 minutes for Safari to load, I can finally upload my pictures directly to my computer. There was so much that went into it, and my MacBook was a major setback for me. It helped me get my work done at the end of the semester and that was all. 

I say all of this to say, sometimes we are forced into setbacks for a reason. I needed to "chill" in order to see how hard I needed to go. I wanted to post more, I wanted to do so much more for my brand and myself, but I was being slowed down. Rosé is my major comeback, so stay tuned for some bomb content and maybe even some re-branding this summer!

Asia Milia Is Graduating + What College Taught Me About Friendships

Your girl is graduating tomorrow! May 14, 2017 I will be graduating with my BA in Strategic Communications from Hampton University. For everyone that knows me or has been following me, you know that I've been complaining about being in school in Virginia forever, and I've felt like school was holding me back from being everything that I wanted to be. So, here we are a few hours away and I cannot believe it, but this post is setting the tone for my blog and to let you guys know that there are no more papers, assignments, or anything holding me back from blogging consistently and taking it to the next level. 

In honor of graduating I wanted to highlight something I've learned during college. And, that is all about friendships. Yes, Hampton taught me so much more than that, but I can honestly say that without my friends I would not be where I am. They push me and motivate me to continue to be great, and Hampton couldn't have gave me anything better (besides my degree). 

When we're young in junior high school and high school friendships are based off of liking the same things, being in the same class, or anything along those lines. But, in college, the friends that I gained were based on energy, their energy matches mine and each of them taught me that you have different friends for different things. Shariah, Tolani, and Marshea are all my hearts in human form and they all serve a special purpose in my life. 

Shariah

The first day we moved into Hampton, we lived across the hall from each other and our parents started talking and introduced us. And, from that day on we were inseparable. That's my travel partner, my sister, my party animal, my everything. We've lived together mostly all of college, and that is truly my best friend. Shariah and I had the wildest college moments, that no one but us will ever know and that can never be duplicated. Shariah has seen me at my worst, my best, and all the in between. I've broken down and cried on her plenty of times throughout college, and she was always my shoulder to lean on, but she showed me tough love. Tears could never flow too long because that North Carolina accent will fly out and give me the pep talk I need. Shariah is the best friend that will send me a scripture mid-day at the times I need it most, and also the best friend who will hop in the car to go to happy hour at 11 a.m. with me. To be honest, I think the hardest park about leaving college will be that I can't run into her room and jump on her bed to wake her up anymore, I can't crave brownies and ice cream with her at 3 a.m. and go to Walmart and get it, and I can't do anything too wild without her because people might think I'm crazy. 

Tolani

Where do I start? Tolani Rosa and I had classes together and always acknowledged each other's outfits but never spoke. It wasn't until we started liking and commenting on each other's Instagram pictures that the bond really started. I DM'ed her once and asked could I photograph her for a past internship I did, and she said of course! We met in the city, walked about 20 blocks with no phones just talking, and we never held a conversation before that! From both loving fashion, to having fathers with the same name, to being 2 weeks apart, Tolani is my everything. When I have a business idea I can send it to her at 4 a.m. and get a response at 6 a.m. telling me how to perfect it, and how amazing or non-amazing it is. When I know that I need to be eating clean, Tolani will snatch unhealthy food out of my hand or she'll stop talking to me for a few hours as punishment, LOL. I can go on and on about our sisterhood, but I'll leave our future up to do the talking. I can lean on Tolani for just about everything, and she's always a ear to listen. Meeting Tolani in college taught me so much about myself, and we pushed each other to this day since the day we met. Our friendship grew slowly, but strong. I've done some crazy stuff for this girl, and I'd do it all over again. Talk about a real friend, and I'll tell you about Tolani. 

Marshea

This crazy, lovable, ambitious girl came into my life when I needed it most. We have the same major so we were always cool and talked, but she became a sister to me overnight throughout senior year. From working New York Fashion Week together to our late night venting sessions about how we're going to be great and all the steps we need to take to get there. Marshea challenges me everyday to step my sh*t up. Both of us had our website launches during senior year and we lean on each other for everything regarding them because they are our babies. Not only does Marshea challenge me and consistently motivate me, but she gets me! I can talk to her about my family and my struggles and she never judges. Marshea can also make you laugh for days, if I'm upset about something I can depend on her to snap me out of it quick with one simple joke. Shea knows that whatever she needs I got her, and vice versa. I will miss our little workout sessions with Tolani, even though they just started at the end of the semester, but those were some of my best days because between every sit up, squat, and sprint were words that will forever stick with me. 

I could go on and on for days about each of our friendships, but the point of this is to tell people that you have different friends for different things and college taught me that. The friend that you write business plans with may not be the one you travel the world with, but they all are of equal importance and help mold you into a better you everyday of your life, and if they don't then you need to reevaluate your circle. 

Thank you, Hampton for these friendships. My bridesmaids and my children's Godparents, and friends that I know I can lean on forever. These aren't the only friends/ sisters I gained at Hampton, but these 3 are my heart in human form, and it was only right to dedicate my last post of being a college student to them. Now, it's time to take the world by storm!

Xoxo,

Asia Milia 

 

Claire Sulmers, "The Bomb Life"

 I remember seeing Claire post a photo to her Instagram over the summer sitting on a laptop announcing that she is writing a book. I automatically messaged my friend ecstatic— I didn’t know exactly what the book would be about, but I just knew I needed it in my hands. For those of you who don’t know who Claire Sulmers is, she is the founder and editor of Fashion Bomb Daily, and she is now a brand ambassador. Anyone who has been following me for a while knows that she is my #1 inspiration in the industry (my friends call me Claire Jr., it’s that serious). This chic, girl boss keeps it real, raw, and 100% authentic in her first book, The Bomb Life.

For anyone who aspires to work in the fashion industry, build a brand, understand the business of blogging, or just trying to figure out the maze of life then this book is for you. Claire introduces us to her life as a Harvard University student, as an African-American studies and French minor where her purpose was discovered. For anyone who is a recent college graduate or soon to be a college graduate like myself, you may need to read her life story for some major inspiration. Sulmers takes her readers from her big NYC move post-graduation, to moving back home, and then following her dream of moving to Paris.

I don’t want to give you too many juicy details of the book, because I want you to read it yourself. But, I do want to let you know that Claire makes sure to let it be known that she worked for everything she has now. She discusses her first jobs, her job as a fact checker and working on Fashion Bomb Daily while at work knowing that her purpose was so much more than sitting in that office. She gives the stories of the people who showed fake love, as Drake would say— and, it made me realize that everyone in the front row is not always applauding for your success.

The most touching chapter to me was the last one, “Letters To My Younger Self.” I shed tears in this chapter because a lot of what she was writing was speaking to me, and I think it can speak to a lot of us. “If you invest your time and energy, and people recognize you are serious about what you are doing, they will support you.” This was one of the main points she made that stuck out to me— Claire begged no one because she didn’t have to, her grind spoke for itself.

I can’t stress how much of an amazing book this is, and I’m not just saying that because I look up to Claire as my role model, but because I know more people out there need this book and need to hear everything she talks about. Not many people in the fashion industry will tell you how they got to where they are and how you can get there, too.

Because I know someone out there needs this, I am giving away a book to one lucky winner. I want this winner to be someone who will truly benefit from this book like I did. I wake up some mornings and read one page just to get through my day— I want someone else to benefit like that. Go to my Instagram, @MissAsiaMilia and find the rules to enter. The contest starts on February 27, 2017 and ends on March 3, 2017 11:59 EST. Good luck, and even if you don’t win please get a copy; find it here!

Xoxo,

Asia Milia  

 

E Honey Skincare Featuring Girl Boss Erika Clark

During the winter months it is extremely important to take extra care of your skin as the cold can take a toll on it. During the summer with outdoor brunch dates and beach days, tans usually keep skin glowing and in a healthy state. However, with heavy winter winds and dry cold it can be a struggle to keep skin moist. Right before winter started, I collaborated with E Honey Skincare products and have been exfoliating my face with their "Goddess Glow" exfoliation which has had my skin glowing and clear despite the cold temperatures and dry cold. Not only has the "Goddess Glow" made my skin feel better, but it also has a great smell especially after a long sweaty workout. Erika Clark is the founder of E Honey Skincare LLC, and I interviewed the girl boss on her accomplishments thus far with EHoney and her life as an entrepreneur. 

Asia Milia: What is E Honey Skincare?

Erika: E Honey Skin Care is a skin care line and beauty brand for women and men of all skin tones. Our mission is for you to have skin that glows like honey. 

Asia Milia: What inspired you to start E Honey Skincare LLC?

Erika:  I was inspired to start Ehoney for a combination of different reasons. It started from my exposure to research on skin of color at Hampton University's Skin Of Color Research Institute, and realizing such an intriguing field existed. Then, working with physicians and PhD's side by side, peaked my interest and passion for dermatology research and skin care.  I began to see just how many people were affected by their skin. When I started to have really bad breakouts and scarring I would make different face scrubs, masks, and experiment with natural products to help heal and prevent my problems. I fell in love with honey and when I went to search products to purchase with honey in them I didn't find any, I then decided I would create my own. Following influential women like Oprah, Beyoncé, Karen Civil and Ming Lee inspired me to listen to my passion and turn my ideas into a reality now instead of later!

Asia Milia: What were some of the struggles of starting your own company?

Erika: Some of the struggles of starting my own company were fear of failure, and fear of imperfection, as well as saving money while maintaining bills and a social life, time management, and making sacrifices.  

Asia Milia: What do you love most about being an entrepreneur?

Erika: What I love most about being an entrepreneur is that everything is on my terms. I control my schedule and I control my destiny. It's so rewarding seeing the fruits of my labor be recognized and appreciated. The support and the satisfaction from customers after making a sale give me the best feeling ever.

Asia Milia: What's next for E Honey Skincare?

Erika: There is so much in store for E Honey. There will be a moisturizer and mask launching soon, then a men's line to follow. The team will be sponsoring a few events, and be participating in some great events in NYC and LA.

Asia Milia: What advice would you give to young women looking to start a business in the beauty industry?

Erika: The best advice I can give is to do your research, be yourself, know your brand, and meet deadlines.

E Honey products can be found here! Get your Goddess Glow Cleansing Scrub and be sure to tag #EHoneySkin on Instagram. 

 

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I don't usually use everything on my face, but this glow scrub consistently keeps my face glowing pre-scrub, during my usage of the scrub, and even after when I put make-up on my face. The Goddess Glow even prevents breakouts when I get them, which is rare.

Open Letter To 2017

Dear 2017,

Thank you in advance for the success that I know you will bring me. I've written down each and every one of my goals and I plan to accomplish all of them within these fresh new 365 days. In 2016, I learned a lot, especially in the last few months. I've learned that I can not put anyone's happiness before my own. So, this year I'm putting Asia's happiness first. When I try to please others so much I tend to lose focus on the "why," and I can promise that I will never do that again.

I want to ask you, 2017, to push me to my limits. Block out my fears and allow me to pursue all of my passions no matter what it takes. 2016 made me realize that I know my passion, but I don't know exactly what my "dream job" is, I know my "dream life." With my graduation a few months away (May 14,2017), and not knowing exactly what I will be doing it bothers me a little, but I have faith that this year will allow me to find that clarity. I have to be thankful to 2016 and previous years for my experience within my desired industry because without if I would still think that my "dream job" was a dream. 

There was a post on Instagram going around on the last day of 2016 that read, "@ a black girl who inspired you this year and tell her why." I received so many tags and they all had one things no common, everyone who tagged me said I inspired them to "boss up," and it made me smile because I said that I wanted 2017 to be my "Boss Up" year. Bossing up in everything, taking control of my life and not letting anyone influence me negatively, working on projects that will allow me to be my own boss, and maintaining my confidence of a boss which reminds me that I can do absolutely whatever I put my mind to. The fact that other women say I inspired them to boss up in 2016 was confirmation that I chose the right theme for my year.

I can't ask you to not disappoint because I have to hold myself accountable. So, all I ask is that you keep positive energy around me that will allow me to keep winning, and even if I lose, allow me to find the win within.

Xoxo,

Asia Milia

To my girl bosses,

I challenge you to do two things this week; write your own open letter to 2017 and write down all of your goals for the year with a pen and paper, be specific with your goals. This will help keep you accountable. The jitters of it being a new year will wear off, but the jitters of you reaching your goals should never wear off. So, here's to a fresh 365 days to boss up. Happy New Year!!!

 

#Internshipszn // let's talk résumés

I'm not a recruiter or HR specialist, however I have sent my résumé out to numerous companies and I have helped my mentees recieved internships/ jobs based on assisting them with their résumés. I promised that with the #InternshipSZN Series I would help in every way possible, and I would never steer you in the wrong direction. 

Résumés can be tricky because what one company may see as perfect, another one may see as not enough. However, no matter what company or publication you send it to there are a few aspects of a résumé that should always stay consistent. 

1. Stand Out

I get so many daily emails asking me how I stand out, and what are the best ways to make a résumé stand out. There are many ways to stand out and not be the average candidate in the file. For starters, it's okay to add a little bit of color and not have a solid black résumé, especially if you're going into an industry that is not strictly corporate. Add a header with your name that incorporates color, or make the lines that separates sections colorful — just make it you! In addition to color, incorporate hyperlinks into the text. If you have any published work, instead of just saying it can be found somewhere put the direct link so they have the option to click it if they want instead of copying and pasting a link. You can do this in Microsoft Word by highlighting the word you want to link and click (Command + K). Next, add numbers. If a recruiter is skimming your résumé and they see numbers that stands out, and it shares a different aspect of your experience. For example, for my ESSENCE College Ambassador experience I say, "Curated 2 videos and 2 articles a week for ESSENCE.com." Those numbers stand out besides saying, "Curated weekly video and written content for ESSENCE.com." If you've ever worked with celebrities name them, don't just write, "Assisted with management of talent." Let them know who, build some credibility under your belt. Lastly, use action words to fully describe your experience. Find a list of appropriate action words here

2. Small Things Matter

The smallest things can turn your résumé away from a recruiter. Before you send your résumé out make sure to proofread it and look for the small things that matter. Grammatical errors can look minor, but they're so important. If you make a grammatical error on your résumé, why should anyone trust you with a job? Another small aspect that could get your résumé ignored is having inconsistent fonts and fonts that are too decorative. Don't have Arial for one job experience and Times New Roman for another one because it's noticeable. Also, don't have a font that is too small because no one straining their eyes to read your résumé. Lastly, don't over exaggerate an experience and when you're asked about it in an interview you're dumbfounded. Be realistic with yourself, that's who they're hiring, YOU!

3. Organization

Having a well organized résumé is key. I was in a recruiting session a few days ago and the recruiter told us sometimes she doesn't even read a résumé, but she looks at it to see if it's readable. Are your sections separated well and not cluttered together? Do you have your education, work experience, and volunteer work scattered all over the place? In order to have an organized résumé make sure you separate your sections and make them readable. Put your education on the top, your work experience, extra experience if necessary, and your skills at the bottom. Keep in mind that some work experience may not be relevant to the position you want, so it is okay to remove that for a specific submission. If you have no work experience you have to sell yourself with the relevant experience you do have. If you have relevant courses, or volunteer work then put in on there. For internships or jobs that require a cover letter you can save extra experience to put on there so recruiters can see that you have even more experience than what is shown on your résumé. 

I hope this helps!

Xoxo,

Asia Milia

 

 

#InternshipSZN // Applying

If I had a dollar for every time I was asked, "How did you get that internship?" or, "What tips would you give to someone trying to break into the industry?" Understand this, I still see myself as working towards where I want to be. I have a stacked résumé, but I still don't know what I'm doing when I graduate and I would never lie and say I know exactly where I'm going and what I'm about to be doing. I'm grateful for my experiences.

 I WORKED hard and SEARCHED for everything I got.

Understand that no opportunities will come falling into your lap. But, because I'm me, I want to make it a bit easier for some of you. Let me complete your first step, at least. It seems like Summer '16 just finished and you think you have time to chill? Nah. Application deadlines for Summer '17 are usually December 1st because the interview process starts to take flight. Here are some programs that I recommend to my young and upcoming media moguls. Don't thank me, it's just me wanting us all to win. Good Luck! :) 

Keep in mind, there are a lot of other programs out there or you can go directly through a publication or company to apply for an internship, but these are programs that I know have had successful outcomes every year. These programs also have AMAZING partnerships and they're all paid. I know most of my readers are interested in the media or fashion, so I tried to find the best for those industries. Keep in mind, more applications come out as the year goes on, and I'll be sure to keep you updated! Stay tuned to the #InternshipSZN Series, I'll be giving you guys résumé tips, cover letter tips, and more. 

 

Time Inc.'s summer internship program is a 10-week program from June to August. The program gives you the opportunity to work with honorary brands like ESSENCE, InStyle, People, Sports Illustrated, Money, and more. For my girls that always DM and email me about an opportunity to work with ESSENCE, this is your chance. LaQuayle Agurs, Hampton University alumna and curator of got-mocha.com speaks on her Time Inc. experience, "Interning at Time Inc. for two summers was such a rewarding experience. You become more than an intern at Time Inc. You truly become a moving part in everything from the brand's culture to the latest issues that hit stands. The company truly believes in nurturing you and allowing you to get as much out of the program as possible."

Time Inc.'s summer internship program is a 10-week program from June to August. The program gives you the opportunity to work with honorary brands like ESSENCE, InStyle, People, Sports Illustrated, Money, and more. For my girls that always DM and email me about an opportunity to work with ESSENCE, this is your chance. LaQuayle Agurs, Hampton University alumna and curator of got-mocha.com speaks on her Time Inc. experience, "Interning at Time Inc. for two summers was such a rewarding experience. You become more than an intern at Time Inc. You truly become a moving part in everything from the brand's culture to the latest issues that hit stands. The company truly believes in nurturing you and allowing you to get as much out of the program as possible."

For my media moguls who are waiting for their break into the entertainment industry, this is your internship to apply to! Viacom is the home of BET, VH1, MTV, Nickelodeon, Paramount, and the list goes on. This is also a 10-week program from June to August. Mya Abraham, Blogger at Flux Unfiltered and Editorial Operations Intern at ILY is a Viacom Intern alumna and said, "My experience with Viacom was amazing. My favorite part was being able to attend the BET Awards in LA. It's always been a dream if mine to be able to work and be in Los Angeles and my internship made that possible." 

For my media moguls who are waiting for their break into the entertainment industry, this is your internship to apply to! Viacom is the home of BET, VH1, MTV, Nickelodeon, Paramount, and the list goes on. This is also a 10-week program from June to August. Mya Abraham, Blogger at Flux Unfiltered and Editorial Operations Intern at ILY is a Viacom Intern alumna and said, "My experience with Viacom was amazing. My favorite part was being able to attend the BET Awards in LA. It's always been a dream if mine to be able to work and be in Los Angeles and my internship made that possible." 

IRTS is a 9-week summer fellowship that prepares it's participants for major careers. Past IRTS fellows have been placed at Google, Facebook, MTV Live, ABC's "Good Morning America," and more. This fellowship is referred to as the "media bootcamp," but they accept all majors. A travel, housing, and living allowance is included. Can you say #goals? Nicole Godreau, a 2016 Ithaca College Graduate and alumna of the IRTS program said, "I would whole-heartedly recommend applying for this fellowship if you're interested in working in the communications field. I left the program confident in my skills and ability to make an impact and change the industry for the better." 

IRTS is a 9-week summer fellowship that prepares it's participants for major careers. Past IRTS fellows have been placed at Google, Facebook, MTV Live, ABC's "Good Morning America," and more. This fellowship is referred to as the "media bootcamp," but they accept all majors. A travel, housing, and living allowance is included. Can you say #goals? Nicole Godreau, a 2016 Ithaca College Graduate and alumna of the IRTS program said, "I would whole-heartedly recommend applying for this fellowship if you're interested in working in the communications field. I left the program confident in my skills and ability to make an impact and change the industry for the better." 

The BRAG Summer Internship Program is a 10-week intensive program designed for students of color who aspire to gain professional experience in the retail industry. Some of BRAG's partnerships include Bloomingdales, Calvin Klein, ELLE, Tiffany & Co., and more. This internship allows you to work in a corporate retail environment. Alix Thomas, a fourth year 5 year MBA major at Hampton University, an alumni of the BRAG program said, "My experience as a BRAG intern has allowed me to not only expand my network and gain an amazing internship, but to also surround myself with people that look like me in an industry that lacks diversity. They have been very instrumental in allowing me to gain the knowledge and exposure in the corporate retail industry."

The BRAG Summer Internship Program is a 10-week intensive program designed for students of color who aspire to gain professional experience in the retail industry. Some of BRAG's partnerships include Bloomingdales, Calvin Klein, ELLE, Tiffany & Co., and more. This internship allows you to work in a corporate retail environment. Alix Thomas, a fourth year 5 year MBA major at Hampton University, an alumni of the BRAG program said, "My experience as a BRAG intern has allowed me to not only expand my network and gain an amazing internship, but to also surround myself with people that look like me in an industry that lacks diversity. They have been very instrumental in allowing me to gain the knowledge and exposure in the corporate retail industry."

The American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME) offers a 10-week summer internship program for print and online publications. Interns that are chosen report, edit, and fact check for publications and occasionally interview celebrities or attend red carpet events. Past interns have been placed at publications including ESSENCE, InStyle, People, Food Network Magazine, Playboy, O, The Oprah Magazine, and more. Alumni of this internship program have went on to grow their career with publications including, Vanity Fair, Glamour, Allure, Facebook, and more notable publications. I recommend this program to anyone who is extremely interested in working for the magazine industry because ASME has outstanding partnerships. 

The American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME) offers a 10-week summer internship program for print and online publications. Interns that are chosen report, edit, and fact check for publications and occasionally interview celebrities or attend red carpet events. Past interns have been placed at publications including ESSENCE, InStyle, People, Food Network Magazine, Playboy, O, The Oprah Magazine, and more. Alumni of this internship program have went on to grow their career with publications including, Vanity Fair, Glamour, Allure, Facebook, and more notable publications. I recommend this program to anyone who is extremely interested in working for the magazine industry because ASME has outstanding partnerships. 

The Emma L. Bowen Foundation is an internship program for all college students (including freshmen) who have an interest in media. This special program allows you to continue developing your skills each summer of your college years. So, if you get this internship your freshman year you're set for every summer until you're a senior. This organization focuses on three tracks of media: The Business of Media, The Content of Media, and The Innovation of Media. Some of their partnerships include, Revolt TV, CBS, Warner Bros. Pictures, and more. For my extra young moguls who are looking for the perfect break in opportunity, here it is! I was actually turned down by them my freshman year, but it was because I wasn't serious. Be serious and know your information about the industry if this is something you really want, I would've told myself that if I could go back to my interview with The Emma Bowen Foundation. 

The Emma L. Bowen Foundation is an internship program for all college students (including freshmen) who have an interest in media. This special program allows you to continue developing your skills each summer of your college years. So, if you get this internship your freshman year you're set for every summer until you're a senior. This organization focuses on three tracks of media: The Business of Media, The Content of Media, and The Innovation of Media. Some of their partnerships include, Revolt TV, CBS, Warner Bros. Pictures, and more. For my extra young moguls who are looking for the perfect break in opportunity, here it is! I was actually turned down by them my freshman year, but it was because I wasn't serious. Be serious and know your information about the industry if this is something you really want, I would've told myself that if I could go back to my interview with The Emma Bowen Foundation. 

The T. Howard Foundation is another amazing program for minority students who want to work in the media industry. This program also runs from June through August and is open to all majors. The partners that the T. Howard Foundation are connected with include more notable companies including, the National Basketball Association (NBA), Viacom, ESPN, Inc., iHeartMedia, The Walt Disney Company, and more. 

The T. Howard Foundation is another amazing program for minority students who want to work in the media industry. This program also runs from June through August and is open to all majors. The partners that the T. Howard Foundation are connected with include more notable companies including, the National Basketball Association (NBA), Viacom, ESPN, Inc., iHeartMedia, The Walt Disney Company, and more. 

I hope this list of programs can help get you jump started for the Summer 2017 Internship Season. You may notice that a lot of companies may be offered through more than one program, and my advice to you is that if there is a company that you've always DREAMED of working with then apply to every program possible that is partnered with them. Good Luck in any applications you may fill out. Always remember to have your application stand out amongst others, proofread multiple times, and be yourself! The next #InternshipSZN post will be all about résumés and how to make yours stand out. 

xoxo,

Asia Milia

Happy International Day of the Girl Child

Beyoncé confirmed for us in 2011 that girls, in fact, run the world, but did you know that girls had a day to celebrate? October 11 was declared “International Day of the Girl Child” by the United Nations in 2011. The mission of the movement is, "to help galvanize worldwide enthusiasm for goals to better girls’ lives, providing an opportunity for them to show leadership and reach their full potential."

In true Asia Milia fashion, it would be crazy of me if I didn't celebrate today. I celebrate women everyday— their accomplishments, their ambition, and more. But, today especially in honor of International Day of the Girl Child, I want to highlight some women that inspire me to continue chasing all of my goals in life. These are 4 women that are the epitome of #BlackGirlMagic and inspire me daily in fashion, my professional life, and fitness.

Claire Sulmers

At this point, everyone that follows me knows that I think I’m Claire Jr. But, for those of you that don’t know— Claire Sulmers is a Harvard University graduate and the editor and founder of Fashion Bomb Daily. Claire is one of the most influential fashion bloggers and Fashion Bomb Daily is the #1 multicultural online fashion magazine. Claire’s style is girly and chic while keeping it classy all the time. She can slay ANYTHING. From a suit, to some killer shoes, or a bomb dress. Let's not forget her blonde hair that is always on point with her outfits. Sulmers' is also known for her events that she does all around the country including "Cocktails with Claire," which is a panel discussion of industry professionals with retail shops, and more. Claire is also a brand ambassador for numerous brands. Her persona exudes confidence and screams boss— it’s no coincidence that we were born on the same day. If I had to choose one person to be for a day, I would say Claire with no hesitation. Today, I celebrate Claire for her style and most importantly, her dedication to her brand!

Gia Peppers

Gia’s dedication to her job is so admirable. From working with BET, ESSENCE Magazine, Hot 97, the NBA, Billboard— the list goes on. As you can see, Gia is #Goals.  I had the pleasure of meeting Gia this summer numerous times, including at my Hot 97 internship and working at the ESSENCE Street Style Festival in Brooklyn, NY. The first time I saw her in Hot 97’s office, I remember being nervous to approach her and someone introduced us. Gia told me words I’d never forget that day, “If your brand is always good, you’re going to always be good. If your brand isn’t good, then you’re not good.” Peppers’ energy is so fun and whenever I see her she always has a smile on her face. Gia was one of the main people who made me consider wanting to be on-air after studying everything she does. Today, I celebrate Gia’s #BlackGirlMagic, and all of her impeccable work she’s done in the media industry thus far.

Shiona Turini

Shiona holds a special place in my heart because she graduated from the illustrious Hampton University, the campus that I walk everyday. Shiona’s story of her breakthrough into the industry is the definition of what drive and dedication looks like. Post-Hampton, she started her career at Yves Saint Laurent as an intern. With no fashion experience, Turini showed up to the PR department everyday at Yves Saint Laurent until they let her stay. Can you say ambition? After a year of interning, she was hired as a PR Assistant. Shiona’s career went soaring after this— worked with publications including Cosmopolitan, Teen Vogue, W Magazine, and more. Also, did I mention that she was one of the stylists who styled Beyoncé’s Formation video? Yup, she was apart of that team. Today, I celebrate this Hampton alumna and notable fashion industry figure for being a role model to me and showing me that if you set your mind to it, it’s possible..

Lakeitha Duncan

Lakeitha inspires me a bit different from everyone else on this list. This is probably the third or fourth time I’ve wrote about her in a post, but it’s because she’s influenced my life so much in the past 3 years. Duncan is a weight loss coach and a lifestyle blogger. Health and fitness being a big part of my life sparked from seeing Lakeitha start her journey in September 2013. I was a freshman in college and I watched her shed 100 pounds on social media in a year. Lakeitha’s dedication to her weight loss and towards her supporters has always inspired me. Oftentimes people tell me that when they look in their closets they say to themselves, “What would Asia do?” This is so funny to me because a lot of times when I need to push myself to go to the gym or before I eat bad I say to myself, “What would Lakeitha do?” Duncan now coaches women on weight loss and hosts challenges (I joined this summer and lost 15 pounds)! She believes in everyone she coaches and I truly believe that’s what makes so many women successful on her plan. Today, I celebrate Lakeitha for her dedication to herself and to others, and for inspiring me everyday of my life whether she knows it or not.

As you can see, one thing all of these women have in common is their dedication and their hardworking skills. Dedication, ambitious, and go-getters are whom I surround myself with and that’s the type of women I look up to. I hope at least one of these women can inspire you today because they deserve to be celebrated! Happy International Day of the Girl Child Day!

Follow them on Instagram! Claire Sulmers, Gia Peppers, Shiona Turini, Lakietha Duncan

How I got to where I am at 20 years old

I find it weird when people ask me how am I successful so young because I see myself as far from successful. I'm on my way to it, definitely, and closer than I was years ago, but I'm not there yet. I guess that's because everyone has a different definition of what success means to them. To me, success is finding my passion, fulfilling it, making money doing what I love, and transferring my knowledge and everything I know to anyone coming behind me.

It amazes me that I can inspire so many young girls to chase their dreams because I have so many women who I look up to that inspire me. The question I get 24/7 is how did I get to where I am today? 

The answer is, I grind, hustle, and don't complain. I'm still a student, I'm a senior in college so I have a lot of time to fully embark on my career. But, I've gotten to where I am now by being a go-getter. I jump for any opportunity that I think describes me best and I work hard to get what I want. Truth be told I've been told no plenty of times, but that never stopped me it just pushed me to keep going. 

For my young girls who are aspiring to work in the fashion industry like me, you have to be willing to work for free. You truly have to start from the bottom. A lot of people see me attending fashion week, working with ESSENCE, and doing "glamorous" work at 20 years old, but fail to realize that I've went summers interning at multiple places. I've made coffee runs and broke down crying in the middle of New York City, and I always ended my day with a smile on my face. 

Is my dirty work done? No, I still consider myself close to the bottom, just with a lot of experience under my belt. But, this is for my young ladies who think the grind is all glamorous and who thinks I got here overnight, I didn't. Be hungry, be humble, and most of all be authentic. When you're authentically you, no one can tell you anything. 

 

xoxo,

Asia Milia

Your Favorite Girl Boss