Mary Ann Goldsberry Professional Dress Closet at the Mike Ilitch School of Business helps student Vanessa Blauet dress for success at MPREP conference
The Mike Ilitch School of Business offers many resources to help students succeed, from the Accounting Tutoring Lab to the Laptop Loan Program. However, none may be as underutilized as the Mary Ann Goldsberry Professional Dress Closet.
“I found out about the closet, but then I wasn’t sure if it really existed because most people I talked to didn’t have that much knowledge about it,” explained Blauet. “One of my professors mentioned they had donated to the closet, and they wanted to bring awareness to this resource.”
Finding resources to support her experiences
This unique student service allows any currently enrolled Ilitch School student or alumni to borrow professional attire to wear at their next interview or event. It was created by Elizabeth Goldsberry '86 in loving memory of her mother, Mary Ann Goldsberry. The service is free to use, participants are only responsible for having the items dry cleaned before they are returned.
Blauet, who came to Wayne State from Lapper, Michigan, has been deeply involved in campus activities during her time at the Ilitch School. She is a member of Wayne Women in Business, the Warrior Consulting Group, the Global Supply Chain Association and is a Community Outreach Ambassador in the MPREP Scholars program. It was MPREP that set her on a journey to discovering this incredible resource.
“I was sent to a conference in Washington, D.C. for a couple days through the MPREP Scholar’s program, and I just didn’t have anything to wear to it,” said Blauet. “I didn’t have the time to go to the store and shop around for anything, so I decided I was going to use this resource because I know this will be quick and easy.”
Accessing the dress closet turned out to be just that: quick and easy. Blauet heard back from Career Planning and Placement, the office that manages the closet, the same day that she reached out, and they set up a time for her to come in and view the clothes.
“It was a really easy process, and the staff there helped me go through everything and recommended some options too,” said Blauet. “I think this is such a great opportunity for students that need it when they need it.”
Spreading the Word
Blauet was able to attend her conference in style, while also promoting the closet to some other students in MPREP.
“I had two friends in the same group of people that were going on the trip. They were worried about not having professional attire, so I told them about the closet...I definitely recommend it to people,” said Blauet.
This resource is particularly useful for those students who may not be able to afford the types of clothes that are typically worn to a networking event or job interview. Others may not have a working knowledge of business dress code, or the subtleties between business casual, business formal, semi-formal and black tie.
“I think a major thing, especially for people like me that are first generation business students, a lot of times we are told to dress business casual, or business formal but what does that look like? Where can I go to get that?” asked Blauet. “Having a closet where you can see the other items of clothing and you can get a general idea of what professional or business professional looks like is great. It gives students a familiarity of what they should look for if they have the money to buy their own professional clothes later on.”
Making an Impact
The Mary Ann Goldsberry Professional Dress Closet was able to help Blauet when she needed it most, and she hopes it can help more students get the resources they need to take advantage of all the Ilitch School has to offer.
“I love Wayne State, and I love the business school. I’m very grateful for the opportunities I’ve had, and those I will continue to have,” said Blauet. “I hope there’s more exposure to the closet because it’s such a great opportunity for students, and they need to know about it when they need it.”
If you need professional dress attire, contact the Career Planning and Placement office by phone at 313-577-4781, or email firstname.lastname@example.org and schedule a time to browse the closet, and be dressed to impress at your next interview, networking event or industry day.