Marquette Career Closet Provides Free Business Attire for Students in Milwaukee

Access to Clothes for Students

Marquette University graduate student Mayra Alaniz wanted future students to avoid the obstacles she had to face when it came to having the proper attire for a job interview, so she created Marquette Career Closet.

The nonprofit collects gently used professional clothes to donate to students on campus who lack access to professional attire.

Mayra Alaniz won a school pitch competition for Marquette Career Closet.
Mayra Alaniz won a school pitch competition for Marquette Career Closet. (Picture provided by Mayra Alaniz)

“Milwaukee, we have the ability to come together and be helpful to one another [and] be a community,” said Alaniz.

The first Marquette Career Closet pop-up event will be held in Spring 2023 on Marquette Campus.

$7,500 Investment

With a $7,500 investment from winning a school pitch competition, Alaniz was able to bring her idea to life. A portion of the funds were used to buy equipment like donation boxes for clothing drives, clothing racks, mirrors, and dry cleaning services. Some funds were also set aside to eventually hire a student to run the nonprofit once Alaniz graduates next year. Her goal is to create a sustainable model for the nonprofit.

According to Alaniz, the concept of career closets exists at other campuses but this is the first of its kind on Marquette’s campus.

From the Southside of Milwaukee

Alaniz is born and raised on the Southside of Milwaukee and she just wants to be a helping hand to others.

“I feel very fulfilled that I am able to get this experience. The experience of coming up with an idea and seeing it to fruition,” she said. “I’m really excited to see students walk away with clothes.”

Marquette Career Closet has received donations from staff on campus, Mueller Communications, Milwaukee Brewers, and others. So many people have donated to the nonprofit that they’ve had to scale back in order to organize.

“We all have a small part that we play in the wellness and success of others,” said Alaniz.

Nyesha Stone founded Carvd N Stone in 2017 to cover positive news while attending the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Stone has a B.A. in Journalism. She has raised over $30,000 to award grants and scholarships. She has also been featured in ESSENCE and worked with the American Black Film Festival.

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