Notice of Online Archive

  • This page is no longer being updated and remains online for informational and historical purposes only. The information is accurate as of the last page update.

    For questions about page contents, contact the Communications Division.

Beth Callies '04 had never thought much about sofa slipcovers or designer drapes. But after spending three days with Ellen Kravet Burke '76, co-owner of Kravet Fabrics Inc., she can speak knowledgeably about both, and about how to manufacture and sell all sorts of home-décor fabrics.

“I didn't know there were so many parts of a fabric company,” says Callies, an economics and business major who signed up for the externship to learn more about marketing

Burke took her on a tour of the fourth-generation family-owned company's headquarters in Bethpage, N.Y., and introduced her to a variety of employees.

“She came to me and didn't know anything about the fabric industry,” Burke says. “We really engulfed her in three days of intense marketing experience.”

By the end of those three days, Burke says, Callies could discuss the business as knowledgeably as an employee with three months of experience. “It was a rewarding experience for me as well as for her,” Burke says.

Callies, who declared her major after the externship, says the experience convinced her that she wants to make marketing her career.

“She showed me every part of the business and how each part focuses on marketing,” Callies says, explaining that she visited the factory and showroom and sat in on meetings that focused on everything from fabric books to Web pages. “There are different people for each step in selling the product.”

“Before I got there, they had a photo shoot for a new ad campaign,” Callies adds. “I sat in on a meeting where the marketing people went through the proofs to decide which pictures would be best.”

Callies was among more than 160 students who participated in Lafayette's Alumni Externship program, in which students served two- to five-day externships with graduates who are seasoned professionals in business, the arts, education, healthcare, law, engineering, science, government, non-profits, and other fields.

Callies is philanthropy chair and standards board member of Pi Beta Phi sorority. She is also manager of the lacrosse team and was a member of the diving team during her freshman year.

Categorized in: Alumni Profiles