MSA prepares for opening of Truman's Closet

The service will run entirely on donations.

Truman’s Closet, originally introduced as part of Missouri Students Association President Nick Droege and Vice President Zach Beattie’s presidential campaign, is a clothes-lending service aimed at providing a no-cost solution to MU students' business attire needs.

It will begin Tuesday, Oct. 2.

“Truman’s Closet is (meant) to allow students, faculty and staff to borrow business attire for anything they have to deal with: skirts, ties, shoes. We want to offer anything they need,” Summer Welcome leader Sean Joy said. “Talking to friends in the past, a lot of my friends have one suit, one tie, one pair of shoes, and those sorts of things.”

The frequent need for a reliable source of business attire is an issue often ignored by students and faculty, Joy said.

“It is a need that is often overlooked," he said. "It is a challenge, but a lot of amazing people (are coming together) to look at ways to expand in the future and address our short and long-term goals. It’s for everyone. When I was a freshman, I had to interview for a lot of different things, and I wasn’t ready for those. It’s also for juniors and seniors who are applying for grown-up jobs.”

While students should have little trouble finding Truman’s Closet, alternative means of taking advantage of the service may become available in the foreseeable future.

“We are located where Tiger Pantry is located: 1400 Rock Quarry Road," Joy said. "We are currently working on hours of operation, but when open, students can come to the location … and have things ready for them to pick-up. We are also working on an online application so that we can have things ready for them for pick-up. For now, students will come to our location, check what we have and be able to get it using their student ID."

Interim Student Services Director Gunnar Johanson and Student Affairs Chair Connor Hickox, who are both working closely with Joy to build the foundation for Truman’s Closet, said they have high hopes for the program’s future.

“In the future, I see us really growing in terms of the items students will check out," Johanson said. "Right now we’re just going through donated items, but hopefully in the future we’ll get monetary donations as well. (I want Truman’s Closet) to not only be for business attire but for apparel across the board.”

The service, while simple at first glance, could provide more to students and faculty than just clothes.

“As we developed the idea of Truman’s Closet, we realized that it has a lot of potential to be much more than a business attire lending program,” Hickox said. “(We) want to implement educational components and empower students to not only look the part but also be prepared for the first impression and employment opportunity. We want to provide more than just clothes.”

While Joy, Johanson and Hickox each have their goals for Truman’s Closet, the three said that the program's future will be determined primarily by those selected to fill new executive positions.

“We’re looking for creative people to join us and work with our team,” Joy said, directing students to the official Truman’s Closet page on the MSA website.

Applications close Aug. 30, and the executives will be chosen Sept. 6. Students can also get involved by volunteering.

“Volunteer applications should be chosen by September 13,” Johanson said. “As of right now, volunteers will be scheduled in shifts to monitor and help students utilize the program. They will do anything that the closet needs from checking out apparel to handing out fliers. However, that might change after we’ve finalized the foundation and (have chosen) coordinators.”

Truman’s Closet’s greatest strength may also be its greatest weakness: Truman’s Closet is entirely reliant upon donations to remain in operation and achieve its goals.

“Right now we’re running purely through donations," Joy said. "We’ve received many through clothing drives, which have been very successful."

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