RCPD and Rowan alum buys 50 suits for 50 business students

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Fourteen of the 50 selected students pose with their new, free business attire from J. Crew in the Gloucester Premium Outlets. - Photo via Bryan Emery

In 2022, Rowan University’s Rohrer College of Business celebrated its 50-year anniversary in style. As a way to give back to business students, the Rohrer Center for Professional Development (RCPD), with the help of Rowan alum Tony Galvin, gave 50 new suits to 50 freshman and first-year transfer students in the business college. 

Galvin made a $15,000 donation to the program, which allowed students to receive professional suits and business attire. After over 100 applications were submitted during the fall semester, 50 students were invited to their own private, personal shopping experience at J. Crew in the Gloucester Premium Outlets in Blackwood, NJ. 

Each student had $300 to find the perfect outfit for their next career fair, job interview or networking event. There were three trips, on March 3, 6 and 8. Transportation was provided by the RCPD using SGA shuttles.

Amie Ryno is the director of the Rohrer Center for Professional Development.

“When we walked in, they had a mannequin with a Rowan t-shirt and balloons and snacks and water. They increased their staff for the days we were there… every student pretty much could have either someone from our team or J. Crew or both helping them to make the right decisions,” said Ryno.

Ryno and the RCPD have had similar programs in the past, but because of the anniversary and the additional funding from Galvin, it was possible for more first-year students and transfers to receive suits than in previous years.

Some of the students who received this professional clothing will also have the opportunity to meet with Tony Galvin for lunch the day before the Rohrer College of Business 50-year Anniversary Celebration on April 28. 

“We asked if he would come early to have lunch with a select group of students who won based on his donation. So we are going to have about 10 to 15 of the students who were outfitted through this initiative be able to network and meet with Tony, who is a really distinguished businessman who has had many facets to his career and can be a big help to these students,” Ryno said.

Even though this specific program was one that students needed to apply for and be selected, there are still resources available to students on campus looking for business attire right now. 

The RCPD has a “profs closet” of donated professional clothing that is available to business students and students across any major on campus. It is located in the RCPD’s office, Business Hall 133.

Bryan Emery is a senior marketing major who is also an intern at the RCPD. He will be graduating this spring and will be working for cosmetic company L’Oréal after graduation.

During his freshman year, he was a recipient of a suit from the Dress for Success program and believes that was an experience that changed his college experience for the better.

“I think just having a resource like this, especially with the RCPD, it not only develops you professionally but you know, kind of elevates your college experience and kind of personally builds confidence and pretty much prepares you for life, which is something that I’ll forever be grateful for,” Emery said.

Emery worked closely with Ryno on this project, which he found to be a “full circle” experience. 

“It was fulfilling,” Emery said. “I got to feel how these students are feeling now with their professional attire, that like slight little confidence, but also… one step ahead, getting ready to prep for their first interview. Whether it’s a mock interview that we’re doing now, or if it’s their first internship. So it is a nice feeling, something that I’ll definitely take away when I graduate.”

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