Tell me a little bit about yourself and your passions
I am proud North Carolina boy that goes to Appalachian State, the most beautiful university in the country. I just started a custom-tailored suit company called Corner Tailors and was just recently elected as president of my fraternity, Sigma Nu. Both of these give me great joy and honor because I love fashion and people. As Richard Eberhart says, “Style is the perfection of a point of view.” Very few things show off style and confidence like a well-tailored suit; and I think confidence is one of the biggest keys to success. As far as being president, that basically means for one year I have an opportunity to impact 70 men the best I can. It’s a huge responsibility but I believe I have the right executive board around me to make the best impact possible on all our guys. How I want to live out this next year is best described by one of my other favorite quotes, from Maya Angelou. “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Greek life tends to get a bad rep, but I could not be more proud to be a member of Sigma Nu.
What about the startup culture intrigues you and which ones have you worked with?
I love the startup culture because it symbolizes ambition and new ideas. I also love working with a team to accomplish a goal, which is absolutely necessary in the startup culture. Since April I have been involved with Mark Cuban’s Cyber Dust as a marketing intern. Cyber Dust is a messaging app that is for people who want to communicate through instant messaging without leaving a permanent record of messages sent. Its one of the fastest growing social media apps on the Apple Store and there is truly not another app like it. Cyber Dust gives you the ability to communicate honestly without your words being taken out of context and it is the future of social media.
The startup I am most actively involved with is called Corner Tailors. To put it simply, we are an online e-commerce business that sells custom tailored suits at an affordable price without sacrificing quality. High quality suits have good fit, fabric and finish. Our goal is to provide all of these things specifically tailored to each customer’s preferences without putting a huge dent in their bank accounts. Our suits are half the price of what you would get at Brooks Brothers for the same quality and enhanced customization.
Can you discuss the circumstances that led to your career and some challenges you have overcome?
Last year I played basketball for my university and it was one of the greatest experiences of my life. It was difficult at first, but it showed me that hard work can get you a lot of places in life. I am only 5’8, not the typical size for a division one point guard, but I worked my butt off and things worked out for me. I worked really hard this summer to put myself in a position to get more playing time under a new coaching staff but the first day of camp I tore my hamstring. Due to my hamstring injury as well as health issues with some family members back home, I made the tough decision to take the year off from basketball. It was a mental set back for sure, after I had put so much work into achieving the dream of playing college basketball. However, not playing basketball opened up time and the opportunity to start my own company. As Bob Marley said, “When one door is closed, don’t you know, another is open.” Basically you just have to make the most of each opportunity you are given, and each time you have a setback, don’t look at it as a setback, look at it as an opportunity to prove yourself in another way.
If you could solve a world problem, what would it be?
Sounds a bit cliché, but that people of all nations, genders, cultures, and backgrounds would be at peace with one another. If that was the case, violence, profiling, and racial tension would be gone.
What advice would you give the youth out there looking to blaze their own path?
I’ll borrow a quote from Mark Cuban.
- You never know the answer to something until you try.
- Hard work is the most valuable equity there is. Know your business and industry better than anyone else in the world.
- Love what you do or don’t do it.
Now at UYD, we are always looking to find out different ways people use their difference to make a difference. How do you use your difference to make a difference?
I have many passions. Because of my many different passions I have been able to connect with a vast amount of people with different perspectives on life and life’s greatest issues. I would say that growing up around so many different personalities has been pivotal in giving me a more creative imagination as well as being able to put myself in other peoples situations, which has helped me become a better listener.
Where can we find out more about you and what you’re up to?
You can find out more about me by following me on Cyber Dust and Instagram. My username on Cyber Dust is mitchpurgason and my instagram is @mitchchotchskie. Also check out my business’ instagram @cornertailors, and website, www.cornertailors.com