By Karen Ho
The Career Center hosted the Clothes Closet Open House Thursday, allowing students to choose free articles of professional clothing, ranging from suits to shoes to accessories, right outside the Career Center.
The open house, which was the second of two held every academic year, strove to promote the services of the Clothes Closet and prepare students with appropriate work attire for the Spring Career Fair on Thursday.
“It’s pretty cool that we have this option here to get free professional clothing” I think a lot of people should take advantage of it,” said Alex Aguillon, co-coordinator of the open house, intern at the Clothes Closet and fourth-year apparel merchandising and management student.
Most of the approximately 300 students who stopped by the open house walked away with their clothing selections in free tote bags.
They also had the opportunity to enter a drawing to win free gift cards.
The Clothes Closet is a free service offered at the Career Center year-round, which allows students to take home any four items of professional clothing per quarter.
It debuted in 2011 to provide students with the proper attire to wear for job interviews, career fairs, conferences and work.
The Clothes Closet relies solely on donations by organizations and people who drop off clothes into donation boxes scattered on and off campus.
Recently, the Clothes Closet reopened redesigned and remodeled, implementing a new inventory management system, adding fitting rooms and harboring a more refined layout.
“It’s like a mini boutique,” said Bryan Truong, Clothes Closet co-coordinator, intern and a fourth-year apparel merchandising and management student.
Truong acknowledges how not all college students can afford to dress the part for a job, but underscores the importance of owning professional clothing as they make the transition to the professional field.
Aguillon adds that because job interviews inevitably depend on first impressions, dressing appropriately is essential.
“That’s what people are going to see when they first meet you,” she said.
Ted Pan, a fourth-year architecture student, didn’t know about the Clothes Closet until he encountered the open house.
“I’ve been here three years”it was the first time I saw this,” said Pan. “Since I’m graduating, it helps.”
Pan plans to use the clothes he selected for an upcoming interview.
Third-year foods and nutrition student Anne Barte, who was picking out her clothes at the open house, expressed the Clothes Closet was good for her budget and had a nice selection of clothes.
“I’m really glad that they do have it here for us” with good choices,” she said about the Clothes Closet.
Although many of the clothes are used, Aguillon says some donors purchase new clothes specifically for the Clothes Closet Open House and throughout the year.
Inventory has not been a problem for the Clothes Closet recently”in fact, there’s so much, the facility is running out of room.
“But that’s not a bad problem,” said Aguillon, noting that many of the clothes end up distributed out on open house.
Aguillon and Truong encourage students to take advantage of the Clothes Closet’s services throughout the year.
“Who could say ‘no’ to free clothing?” Aguillon said.
The Career Center is located in building 97 underneath the Campus Marketplace, across from the Cultural Centers.
Evelyn Garcia / The Poly Post
The Clothes Closet provides students with four free items per quarter.
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