TUCSON, Ariz. — A student-run non-profit is helping those at the University of Arizona who need professional or business clothes.
“Blouses, shirts, pants, blazers, ties. Honestly, if you name it, we probably got it,” said Campus Closet executive director, Hannah Stewart.
Campus Closet is a student-run resource that collects then distributes gently used or new business attire to those affiliated with the University - free of charge.
“If you start off low-income you can’t afford professional clothing, then you go to the job interview and you don’t present yourself in way that impresses the interviewer, because, you know, we all have these implicit biases. Then they don’t get the job and maybe they don’t have a job when they need it, and they can’t afford to buy new clothing. So it's a part of this cycle that we’re trying to break,” said Stewart.
From upcoming job interviews to internships and other professional events, Stewart says Campus Closet visitors can then go on with confidence that they are dressed for the appropriate occasion.
Here’s how it works; when you come in, show your CatCard, and you’ll be awarded “points” to go around and collect items.
“Every person automatically gets four points. Basically different types of clothing are worth different amounts of points. Our pants and shirts are worth one point, our professional dresses and blazers are worth two points each,” said Stewart, ultimately, allowing each person to create an entire outfit if need be.
Campus Closet may serve about 30 people per distribution, but it wants to serve more and is upping the number of distribution days. It’s still trying to get the word out that it is here to help the university community.
“We’ve never really been open in a non-COVID semester, so definitely as we transition into more in person and to a more traditional semester, that’s obviously going to change a lot,” said Stewart.
Campus Closet is looking for more donations. It’s most in need of business attire in women’s plus sizes and men’s small and medium sizes.
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