Dress for Success Provides Women with Professional Attire

“Dress for Success”, a program that gives women professional attire to aid in academic success, celebrates its 15th anniversary Friday.  

The program, according to Executive Director Jessica Hudson, helps women achieve academic independence through a support network of professional apparel and the development of tools to help succeed in the workforce.  

“[Dress for Success] here at Marshall University helps students and the community of women get a feel for the professional world of work with resume building, mock interviews, and doing virtual meetings to help with life skills,” said Hudson. 

“Dress for Success” was created by Dr. Sherri Smith, who worked for more than 20 years at Marshall, and recently announced her retirement plans. Smith was the first director of the program for three years.   

The idea started in December of 2005, when Smith was reading a final paper from a women’s studies class. The class had been discussing four women’s organizations that semester, and students were assigned to bring theoretical readings into the conversation with experience in the community. One student’s final paper discussed Lucy’s Attic, which works to help women break from a dependence cycle.  

Hudson said on the day of the anniversary, there will be a 15 for 15 campaign that invites the community and anyone on the program’s social media page to donate. If every social media follower donates $15, more than $45,000 would be raised.