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NIU students collect business clothing to help others interviewing to get jobs

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College can be a fun but also stressful time for students. 

Two Northern Illinois University students are seeing that stress first hand while getting ready for internships and job interviews.

Seniors Emma Stettner and Cordnei Gibson co-founded “Barsema’s Closet,” a repository of donated business casual and business professional attire for students to access at a discounted price.

Stettner says the idea first came to her during her freshman year, when she had an interview but couldn’t afford professional clothing.

“I’m really hoping that the students not only get the help they need, the clothing they need, but know they are supported, to advance their professional development,” she said.

Gibson said, “We started gathering research. [We] met with the dean, collecting information to start the store. [We] started collecting clothing, hangars, racks, and now we have the grand opening.”

A total of 960 articles of clothing have been donated to Barsema’s Closet so far.

They are still seeking donations of new or gently used professional clothing.

The women hope other students volunteer to take over the program after they graduate.

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