More than 100 senior women in the Georgetown Scholarship Program attended the eighth annual LOFT Styling Workshop earlier this month to learn tips for dressing in the workplace and select professional clothing provided by LOFT.
The event took place at the women’s clothing retailer’s branch on Wisconsin Avenue and was organized by LOFT in cooperation with GSP, which provides support, advising, networking and mentoring to over 600 Georgetown undergraduates, most of whom are first-generation college students or come from low-income family backgrounds.
The LOFT workshop began after members of the GSP Advisory Board realized students in the program needed guidance on professional clothing options. The board brought students to a LOFT store to help them find appropriate outfits, according to GSP Assistant Director Mariana González (MSB ’15).
“Our board members took some of our senior ladies to LOFT to help them pick out clothes for interviews that they had coming up,” González said. “Gary Muto, who was the CEO of LOFT at the time, had a daughter going to Georgetown, and he found out that we had done this and he thought it was amazing and offered to provide that opportunity for all GSP senior ladies.”
Workshop attendees each received a $250 gift card to use at the LOFT store, in addition to a special 50 percent discount on all clothing items in the store, according to González, who served as the GSP staff liaison for the LOFT workshop and worked with LOFT to help coordinate the event.
A GSP graduate herself, González attended the workshop twice during her time at Georgetown.
González said the event with LOFT allowed her to feel more prepared for the interview process when she was a student.
“The workshop was really special. I had a number of interviews that I was able to use my clothing for,” González said. “A sentiment that we’ve had echoed from a lot of our senior ladies is that it goes beyond just getting clothes — it gives an added level of confidence in knowing that you have people who believe in and support you so much that they’re willing to do all of this.”
In addition to the complimentary merchandise, LOFT also brought in employees to offer GSP students advice on crafting a professional wardrobe, picking the right clothing choices for different workplace situations, mixing and matching outfits effectively, and shopping with a budget in mind.
Beatrice Hociota (MSB ’19), a GSP student who attended the workshop, said she gained helpful professional insight from the event.
“While this experience gave me some key pieces to have in my wardrobe for the workforce next year, it also taught me a lot about how to continue to be smart with my purchase in the future,” Hociota wrote in an email to The Hoya. “It prepared me for the immediate future and enabled me to succeed going forward as well.”