Career Closet

Career Closet Grand Opening

Daily Press 10/1/2014
By Amber Mullen

What does one wear to an interview? Well, for many people entering a new field of employment this decision is can be more intimidating than the interview itself.

On Tuesday, Northwest Wisconsin Concentrated Employment Program, Inc. (CEP, Inc.) unveiled their newest initiative– the Career Closet– with the goal of assisting “disadvantaged, prospective job seekers obtain clean, appropriate clothing for jobseeking, interviews and new employment.”

Becky Stanhope, workforce resource specialist for CEP, Inc., said the vision for the closet is simple: to adequately prepare jobseekers with the right outfit.

“Our vision for it is to assist jobseekers who aren’t prepared, that want to go into the work world, and to help them with their confidence level and to make sure they are appropriately clothed,” Stanhope said.

CEP, Inc., in Ashland, recently received $5,000 from the Apostle Islands Community Foundation, a branch of the Duluth Superior Area Community Foundation, to set up the Career Closet.

The Duluth Superior Area Community Foundation is a tax-exempt public charity that provides donations to organizations in northeast Minnesota and northwest Wisconsin committed to improving the quality of life for residents through human services, arts, community development, economic development and education.

The Career Closet is stocked mainly with community donations. The Career Closet is now accepting donations of all sizes of business and business casual clothing items for men and women including suits, skirts, dresses, blazers, blouses, sweater, ties, briefcases, scarves, medical scrubs, unopened toiletries,

“We are always, always, seeking more donations,” Stanhope said.

Donations can be brought to the Ashland CEP, Inc. office at 422 Third Street West, Suite 200.

Jobseekers looking to utilize the Career Closet must make an appointment by calling (715) 682-9141.

According to Stanhope, if the Career Closet does not have the right type of clothing for an individual they will be given vouchers to local secondhand stores to find what they need.

The grand opening of the Career Closet concluded workforce development month for CEP, Inc.

Brad Gingras, chief operating officer at CEP, Inc., said during the month of September, CEP, Inc., aimed to inform local businesses and jobseekers of the many services they provide for the community.

“We can help any individual, regardless if they are 14 or 84 years old, do whatever is needed next tin their life to enhance their careers,” Gingras said.

CEP, Inc. works in partnership with the Northwest Wisconsin Workforce Investment Board to provide job training, job placement, education and resources to jobseekers in the community. The organizations also help to connect employers with ideal candidates in their database.

CEP, Inc. helps over 1,000 people each month at their permanent job centers in Ashland, Superior, Spooner and Park Falls. According to Gingras, many additional people are also helped CEP, Inc. outreach centers in partnership with Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College, North Central Technical College and LCO Community College.

Amber Mullen can be reached at amullen@ashlanddailypress.net or by calling (715) 682-2313.

Original Article From Ashland Daily Press: Career Closet Grand Opening