Italy Dreaming: Preparing for Departure

Ciao! My name is Sydney Winner and I am an Industrial Engineering student at the Swanson School of Engineering. I am from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and I want to see the world! I am so excited to attend the Plus3 Italy program and combine my love for travel with my engineering education.

In order to prepare for Plus3 Italy, we attended pre-departure meetings. At these meetings, we learned a lot about both traveling in a new country and supply chain management in the fashion industry. We also worked in groups in order to build team skills and meet others in the program with us.

In groups, we completed many projects exploring supply chains. One of our projects centered around the supply chain of a t-shirt. Through this exercise, my group and I developed a better understanding of how a supply chain works and how far it can span. Our professors also pushed every group to think about how sustainability and social responsibility affects our supply chain. We even completed individual worksheets examining these themes in modern day fashion companies. After completing these projects, we were more aware of how supply chains worked and what is important to be mindful of when researching a company.

From there, we went on as a group to research one of the companies we would be visiting abroad. My group ended up researching the Bottega Velasca. Keeping in mind all the topics we learned from previous assignments, my group constructed three questions we would like to ask the company when we visit. All the background knowledge about supply chain management and the fashion industry has helped us become more knowledgeable for the company visits.

Additionally, we faced the challenge of learning how to prepare to travel to a new country. We went over traveler safety, packing tips, and registered for traveler programs. Additionally, we socialized with each other to become familiar with the other travelers and learned healthy habits for traveling. All these tips helped me feel more prepared for travel.

I am very thankful for the pre-departure meetings because they helped me feel ready to travel. I am looking forward to leaving for Italy in the near future and applying my new knowledge. I am so grateful for the adventures I will have!

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