With help from the community, students at Tyler ISD’s Career and Technology Center can now benefit from a professional closet with all sorts of free business attracts for them to keep.
The closet originally opened up before the COVID-19 pandemic, but with the help of local businesses, employees from the district and donors, the closet grew and has moved into a bigger location and is now offering more items for Career Technology Education (CTE) students.
Jessica Brown, CTE work-based learning coordinator, said the closet is free of charge and caters to all students enrolled in CTE programs. Brown said the closet is a way for the campus to fill a gap and help students “look the part” for their interviews.
“Tyler ISD has a lot of wonderful programs of study where we equip our students with certifications and skills to get ready for the workforce but we noticed there was a gap and a need for professional dress for some of the interviews they may get for an internship or a job,” she said. “The professional dress closet was started so that we could help equip our students to be even more successful so they can look the part for their interviews.”
Anthony Viramontes, CTE and Tyler High School student, works in the professional closet and considers it a good opportunity for students who may have financial struggles.
“Some people don’t have the opportunity to buy nice clothes so they can come up here and have an opportunity to look around and to see if they need anything from here,” he said.
Items from the closet range in a variety of sizes, colors and attire for girls and boys, but the closet is always taking more donations, especially clothes for women.
“We take anything, button-ups, polo shirts, dress pants, full suits, ties, shoes, dresses, skirts, anything professional for our kids,” Brown said.
Donations can be dropped off at the CTC front office located at 3013 Earl Campbell Parkway, or you can call at (903)262-1911 or email Brown to set up a time for a donation pick up.
There are no requirements for students who want to take advantage of the closet and all items are kept by the students afterwards. CTE students can also come back to get more items if needed, which can be done during their CTE class period, or by emailing Brown at firstname.lastname@example.org or calling to set up a time to visit the closet outside of those hours .
Although the closet is currently run by marketing class interns, Brown has larger goals planned for next year.
“This year we have two students that work as interns from our marketing class but we just moved into a new location that’s larger so our goal is to get it set up and organized so that next school year we can have some of our business and marketing students run this like an actual store,” she said.
Brown also mentioned CTC will also be hosting an Opportunities Fair on Thursday, which will give students an opportunity to use the closet as they prepare to meet with over 90 business and organizations for a chance to obtain an internship, summer job, full time/part time job.
Interested in donating? Items that can be donated are below:
- Jackets (girls and boys)
- Shoes (flats, heels with low heel, close and open toe shoes)
- Pants (girls and boys)
- polo shirts
- dress shirts
- dress socks
- Dress shoes (boy)
- Belts (girls and boys)