A decent business suit can cost hundreds of dollarsâtrouble is, those sticker prices aren’t tailored to most students’ budgets, and all too often young people entering the workforce find it prohibitively expensive to dress their best when they go on their first interviews.
But on Tuesday, November 15, hundreds of University of Bridgeport (UB) students will get help buttoning up for success when the University’s Career Services Center, the nonprofit group Save a Suit, and a host of private companies team up to distribute free work attireâand arm students with invaluable in-the-know jobs tips.
The career day event, which runs 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the Cox Student Center, is for UB students only. But several corporate partners have signed on to conduct mock interviews with students, review resumes, and provide advice on topics from crafting strategic job searches to managing personal online profiles that can make, or break, a potential career candidate.
“Companies have realized students need to be prepared and they want to pitch in to get them to where they need to be. We’re extremely fortunate that so many are working with students at the event and by the generous donations we’ve received from our sponsors,” said Antonia Mahoney, coordinator of the UB Career Services Center.
Save a Suit, a Shelton-based nonprofit that was formed specifically to help attire college students looking for work, and dozens of other individuals, have contributed more than 300 men’s and women’s suits, ties, belts, and other accessories for the much-anticipated event.
“Save a Suit serves as a gateway for graduating students to start pursuing their dreams. We truly want to enrich the lives of these young talented students and ensure that they have an equal opportunity to begin a career during these rough economic times,” said Jessica Ewud, Chief Information Officer of Save a Suit (www.saveasuit.org).
Students from UB’s fashion merchandising program will distribute the outfits to their peers, along with practical tips on how to best achieve a polished look needed to impress employers. Image Marketing Consultants, a Connecticut-based marketing and PR firm for businesses, will guide students in crafting their overall image.
To ensure that students are both well-dressed and fully prepared, Career Day sponsors are providing a full menu of “educational tools they will use for life,” added Save a Suit founder Scott Sokolowski.
Recruiters from Toys R Us and Aetna, for example, will conduct mock one-on-one interviews with students. Executives from Barnum Financial, Walmart, and Pitney Bowes are reviewing students’ resumes. And representatives from Ann Taylor Loft in Fairfield are running seminars on proper business etiquette.
Robyn Greenspan ’07, a UB alumna who is editor-in-chief at ExecuNet and a blogger at HuffingtonPost.com, will teach students how to clean up their online presence on social networking sites, while career coaches will help students list their skillsâand upload annual report-worthy photographs that will be taken at the fairâto the career networking website Linked In.
Then there’s help with that ever-thorny question: “What do you put when you don’t have a job or a title? That can be tough,” said Mahoney.
Mike Roer from Entrepreneurship Foundation has answers, and he’ll be on hand to create sample business cards tailor-made for students that best showcase their experiences.
And while students may not have a job titleâyetâthere are still plenty of opportunities for them to develop track records and skills to impress would-be employers. To help them, students from National Society for Leadership and Success, an on-campus honors club, are hosting workshops to show their UB peers how to get more involved, network, and identify leadership opportunities on campus.
Media contact: Leslie Geary, (203) 576-4625, email@example.com