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JC Penney’s semi-annual Suit-Up Event offers professional dress for students who need to dress to impress future employers and in interviews.

The JCPenney semi-annual suit-up event offers students a great discount to help build their career wardrobe, and this time, it looked a little different.

Due to COVID-19, the event was held online this fall. To participate, students needed to text “IUP to 67292 to receive a 30 percent discount coupon that was only active from Sept. 16 until 20.

The JCPenney suit-up event offers career dress apparel to all university students and faculty. This event is very helpful for the all too familiar life as a broke college student.

IUP started participating in the Suit-Up event in January of 2018. This event first started at the University of Oklahoma several years ago, while IUP was one of the first in Western Pennsylvania, according to Tammy Manko. IUP Center for Professional Career Development was inspired to partake in this event to ensure students have to opportunity to find affordable professional clothing.

The website (https://www.jcpenney.com/m/suit-up-view-all) was well formatted to help you find what you need in terms of dress and style.

According to their site, JCPenny has clothing for all events, such as award ceremonies, job interviews, presentations and socials. They also recommend when shopping during this event to buy “foundation pieces,” as they can be the base to any look. Once you buy the foundation, you can then add things such as ties for men and some dress jackets or shoes for women.

 “During your college career, you’ll find yourself needing many new outfits for showing up and looking your best,” the JCPenney mission statement says. “Dresses are a nice way to feel feminine and dressed up.

Add in some new heels or pumps to give yourself that extra air of confidence for times when you need to be top of the class. Jewelry, scarves and belts can let you inject your own style. Dress pants for men are good ‘go-to’ for banquets, class presentations or any day you want to wear something besides sweatpants or joggers.

Since college students are usually watching their budgets (and rightly so), JCPenney understands that price is a consideration when purchasing new pieces for a wardrobe. You’ll find the right prices for those quality items you need to suit up and look like the responsible adult you’re fast becoming”

“The event is a collaboration with the local JCPenney, though the overall program is driven by the corporate headquarters and we work with both entities to ensure the event is well organized and runs smoothly. “ Manko said.

The savings that were offered proved to be beneficial to a college budget. For example, a $40 Strafford was offered to students at the rate of $18 with the coupon.

In terms of men’s foundation pieces, such as basic dress shirts and pants, there was a possibility to save up to $30 on certain styles and sets. For example, a U.S. Polo originally priced at $55 was offered to students and faculty as a rate of $20.

For women the deals were just as sweet. A London Style three-quarter sleeve sheath dress was discounted well. The original price was $72, but it was priced at $34 dollars during the event. This deal perfectly suits college students who are short on cash, but want style and quality that lasts.

When going into the professional world, it’s important to dress the part for the job you want. Dressing for the job you want can help you in many ways, and as their mission statement says, build confidence too.

This is a semi-annual event, so if you missed this one, no worries. There will always be more opportunities with the same great discount that will be offered this spring.

“We hold this event each semester – meaning fall and spring. Typically, it's an in-person event, but due to the pandemic, we made the decision to take it virtual this fall and worked with JCPenney to put appropriate processes in place to make it work.” Manko said.

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