AKRON — Students at Tippecanoe Valley High School are getting a chance to make a good first impression and put their best foot forward with the help of a new boutique in the school.
What started out as a clothing closet for students has morphed into a boutique featuring business attire available for loan for TVHS students.
The idea of the boutique had been bounced around over the years at the high school said TVHS english teacher June Yazel, who has been a catalyst of the boutique. Many high school students are in need of business attire for classes that help prepare them for the professional world. Often these classes require students to dress up for mock interviews and other events.
“Some of the kids don’t have the means to purchase clothes,” said Yazel.
Through the school’s Facebook page, the school asked the community to donate business attire to the school for students. Kelly Bradley, an interpreter at the school who also was essential in starting the boutique, stated “The donations were overwhelming.”
The donations continued to pour in from the community, parents and teachers. The school began storing the clothing in a storage closet at the high school. Students who mentioned they weren’t able to afford appropriate clothing for various school activities were able to pick out clothing from the closet to wear and then return.
While they were happy students were able to ge the clothing they needed, Yazel explained there was still a stigma with borrowing clothing from a school’s storage closet. In order to provide kids with appropriate attire while hoping to diminish any negative connotations of the program, the staff decided to find a space to transform the clothing closet into a boutique.
Family and consumer science teacher Mrs. Landis has also had a hand in the creation of the boutique. She offered the room located in-between her classrooms as a space for the boutique.
Eight students who are have student resource time on Thursdays have signed up to work on the boutique. The students are preparing the space by painting the room and creating mannequins for the clothing to be displayed.
Yazel mentioned the students have really taken over the project. The students have come up with the name “T Boutique” and a logo for the boutique.
The school is in the process of applying for grants that will provide funds for additional racks in the room.
Yazel says she hopes the boutique will one day have enough clothes that they will be able to donate clothing to students without them having to give them back.
The boutique is slated to open whenever students are finished preparing the room. Bradley estimates the boutique will be open within the next few weeks.
Yazel stated they are still accepting donations. Any business attire or dress clothes are welcome. She mentioned they are especially in need of size small men’s dress shirts. Those interested in donating can drop off clothing at the front office of TVHS.