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Campus Career Closet

March 17, 2022

Coming Soon! Career Closet

Lasell University’s School of Fashion has shared plans for an on-campus Career Closet, which will provide professional attire rental and styling services for students attending conferences, interviews, corporate trips, and more. Led by Kristin Kinsky, assistant professor of fashion, and fashion and retail merchandising student Madison Cormier ’22, the initiative is in its early planning stage, with the goal of securing a permanent campus space in the near future.

Kinsky and colleagues realized through talking with students over the years that there was a wide range of what “professional dress” meant to them and to the different industries they sought roles in.

“I realized that most of these students wouldn’t keep those kinds of items in their closets, and many might not be able to afford or want to spend money on something they will only wear on certain occasions,” says Kinsky. “The question became, ‘How are we not doing this as a University with a robust fashion program?’”

The Career Closet is a choice opportunity to positively impact three of the University’s areas of institutional focus: sustainability, career readiness, and equity/inclusion.

“It is a service that I definitely could have benefitted from as a student,” says Cormier. “Whether I’m traveling to a fashion trade show or my roommates studying health science are attending research events, we all always feel like we need more professional clothes but the expense is too great.”

Cormier has conducted extensive research to expand the team’s plans, and has collaborated with other students to involve as many minds as possible. She and Kinsky joined an entrepreneurship class at the start of the spring semester to gain their perspective on the project, too.

“We want to work with other disciplines in the same way that we would work in the fashion industry,” says Kinsky. “It replicates what it is like to work in the world with partners outside of your specialty. Our hope is that when this is up and running, we have a myriad of students involved from business to communications, marketing, and more. It’s another huge opportunity for Connected Learning on campus.”

The initiative has received preliminary funding from the F.A.O. Schwarz Family Foundation, with the hope of partnering with other charitable groups, individuals, and corporate partners.

“The dream is to work with companies that can give us a size run of brand-new, current fashions that enable us to meet the needs of every student on campus,” says Kinsky. She and Cormier hope to establish those partnerships, plus additional connections with local dry cleaners and other services, with support from the Office of Advancement.

Do you know of or work for a company that would be interested in partnering with the Lasell University School of Fashion? Contact Kristin Kinsky (kkinsky@lasell.edu) or Sarah Neill, philanthropy and engagement officer (sneill@lasell.edu).