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College of Business Career Closet

September 07, 2016, Chelsea Kujawa

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The Business Placement Center (BPC) is getting a new addition: the College of Business Career Closet.

The Career Closet will have clothing that students will be able to rent for interviews and other professional events. The students will be able to borrow a whole suit - or just the pieces they need - so they can look professional and ready for success in every way possible.

Danna Lewis, director of Career Services, said the Career Closet emerged because the college was getting feedback from employers that while the students were ready academically, their attire lacked polish. The Career Closet is a way that the college can teach students how to dress professionally.

“The College of Business doesn’t want students to miss an employment opportunity due to their attire lacking,” Lewis said.

Even though donations have been trickling in, donations of any kind are greatly appreciated. The goal of the Career Closet is to have two full outfits in every size so that every student can be served.

“We are committed to make this work for the students, even if that means purchasing some of the items,” Lewis said.

The Career Closet service is free to students in the college. Students who rent an outfit from the Career Closet for a professional event, will be required to sign a document noting that he or she will have the item(s) for one week. The document also states that student is not required to take the items to a dry cleaner; the college will take care of that service. There also will be a spot on the form to note for what purposes the clothing will be used.

“If the student indicates that the attire is being used for an interview and gets the job, the BPC is going to give the student the suit as a gift, in hopes that, in the future, the student will give back to the Career Closet,” Lewis said.

That being said, the Career Closet is always going to need donations, she said. There also is a tracking system where graduate assistants will keep an inventory of the articles of clothing. This is to ensure that the closet has enough articles of clothing in stock, Lewis said.

Lewis’ advice to students thinking of accessing the Career Closet, is to “just come in.”

“Don’t be embarrassed to come and check something out of the closet,” she said. “This is for all College of Business students.”

Being able to rent items from the Career Closet is a benefit of being a student in the College of Business, and it sets the college apart from the others at the university.

“Having the Career Closet is a way to give back to the students in the college,” she said.

There will be an open house for the Career Closet at a later date. Please follow us on social media for more information. The BPC will have a drawing for a free dry cleaning coupon from Horstman’s Cleaners and Furriers, which is locally owned by College of Business alumnus John Kirk.

Anyone wishing to make donations to the Career Closet can send or drop off gently used professional attire to: Business Placement Center, 1025 Lincoln Drive, Mail Code 4619, Carbondale, IL 62901.

There also are various monetary sponsorship opportunities available that will allow the College of Business to ensure that the closet is inclusive to all students in the college.

If you would like additional information on the Career Closet or would like to make a donation, please contact Lewis at danna.lewis@business.siu.edu or 618/453-2710.