Student Senate opens a free online career closet to help students dress for success

Donated clothing waiting to be used. Photo Illustration by Dakota Zugelder.

In keeping with their mission to advance the lives of students at the college, the Student Senate has opened a career closet consisting of professional new and gently worn clothing and footwear available to students at no cost.

Although the Career Closet just opened, the project has been in the works for over a year. According to Student Senate vice president Dalal Essa, the project was initiated in 2018 under the leadership of her predecessor, Caleb Keltner, who modeled it after a clothing pantry serving students at the University of Kansas (KU).  Essa worked closely with Keltner last year.

“Caleb did an amazing job setting the foundation and getting approval from advisers and directors,” Essa said. “They saw KU had a successful career closet and agreed it would be good for [the college].”

Essa got involved in student government to improve the lives of students and gain experience in service and fundraising, and has worked closely with the creation of the closet. She believes the Career Closet will boost the confidence of students heading into job interviews and will aid in the professional advancement of any student attending the college who may not be able to afford professional clothes.

The Career Closet gallery is now online and ready for students to make their selections. Essa hopes people will take full advantage of this valuable program.  When asked to share her thoughts about the career closet with students she said, “This is an awesome resource to use. Don’t be afraid to request items from the website. This could be the best way to invest in your future.”

For more information about the clothing provided in the Clothing Closet, go to the Clothing Closet page on the Get Involved site. Each item has an image, description and identification number. Scroll down to the request form and request the item(s) you would like from the career closet gallery; after filling out the form provided, which requires no financial documentation, shoppers are good to go.

The clothing can be borrowed from the closet for special events and interviews, or students can keep the clothing to establish a professional wardrobe, no questions asked. Requested items will be gathered and scheduled for pick up.

Donations of new and gently worn professional attire to replenish the Career Closet are gladly accepted, provided they are clean with no visible signs of wear. Clothes also must be on hangers. Please drop off all donations at the Center for Student Involvement Desk.

Essa said, “We want students to feel at home in their own skin, to look the part in the job they already have or a job interview they are trying to land, without having to feel insecure about their wardrobe.”


Story by Penny Thieme



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