When I responded to a LinkedIn ad for a marketing intern and social media coordinator position, I had no idea of the fashion adventures that would lie ahead. My past six months with Citrine Grey, a high-end women’s workwear start-up, have challenged my professional growth in ways that I could not have imagined. I owe it all to my incredible mentor, and our founder, Christine Grey.

Christine is simultaneously the founder and CEO of Citrine Grey while also working as the Head of Hybrid Systems at Siemens Gamesa. She started Citrine Grey had been looking for high-quality workwear that supported her throughout her work day, but was beautiful enough to transition from work to night looks. As a young female professional in a male-dominated industry, she wanted to feel confident in her work clothes. She grew tired of feeling like she wanted to change out of her work clothes as soon as possible. With no luck finding a brand delivering consistently comfy and attractive professional clothes, she decided to make them herself. Thus, Citrine Grey was born.

Working for such an ambitious woman has inspired me. When interviewing with Christine, she told me that I could be a part of the business as much as I wanted. She affirmed that she would be willing to teach me, and she did exactly that. Starting with a simple digital marketing internship, my experience at Citrine Grey turned into something much more eye-opening and empowering. Over the past six months, I have seen personal improvements in how I communicate in a professional setting, ask for help in the workplace, and manage my time. From a professional standpoint, I’ve learned how to set and obtain weekly goals and execute a social media strategy. Most importantly, observing the behind-the-scenes of running a startup business has provided me confidence in my own talent.

Creative content was one of my biggest challenges throughout this internship. I’ve always doubted my work and shied away from putting my creativity into the world, so I struggled to come up with captions and weekly blog posts. Thanks to Christine’s guidance and encouragement, I am leaving Citrine Grey with months of social media planning, multiple blog posts under my belt, and new confidence in my ability to create. I will carry these skills throughout my future career. This experience has helped me overcome my self-inflicted limitations and for that, I will be forever grateful.

Though I am sad to leave Citrine Grey, I am grateful for everything Christine has taught me. Watching Christine work endlessly to create and keep the integrity of her brand pushed me to better myself. While communicating struggles to your superior, asking for help, or keeping with a consistent tone and style when designing posts may seem like simple things, these are things you normally wouldn’t think as being immensely important when setting yourself apart in your startup business. I will take these lessons with me throughout my career, and I strongly believe that the skills I’ve developed here make me a stronger candidate for the workforce than I was before my internship. I strongly recommend Citrine Grey for anyone else looking to learn as much as possible from an incredible mentor in the fashion industry. I see many avenues for my future career now and I cannot wait.