The New York Public Library Lets Patrons Check Out Ties, Briefcases & Handbags for Job Interviews

Once upon a time, pubic libraries’ cir­cu­lat­ing col­lec­tions were lim­it­ed to books and oth­er print­ed mate­ri­als.

Then audio record­ings and movies entered into the mix.


Board games…

There’s a library in Ohio that lets its patrons check out gui­tars.

And now, New York Pub­lic Library card­hold­ers can bor­row a neck­tie, brief­case, or busi­nesslike purse for a one-time, three-week lend­ing peri­od.

The New York Pub­lic Library Grow Up pro­gram at the River­side branch is mod­eled on sim­i­lar ini­tia­tives in Philadel­phia and Queens.

The branch is sit­u­at­ed across the street from two high schools, and librar­i­an Thad­deus Krupo told Crain’s New York Busi­ness that the pro­gram was launched in response to the high num­ber of stu­dents tak­ing advan­tage of the library’s free career resources, such as print­ed sheets of job inter­view tips.

Most of the kids from Fiorel­lo H. Laguardia High School Of Music & Art and Per­form­ing Arts (aka the “Fame” school), one of New York City’s most com­pet­i­tive pub­lic schools, can be pre­sumed to have a tie or two in their clos­ets, along with what­ev­er else they’re required to wear onstage for their var­i­ous con­certs and per­for­mances. They’re also being trained in how to present them­selves in an audi­tion-type sit­u­a­tion.

Such uni­ver­sal assump­tions don’t nec­es­sar­i­ly apply to the mas­sive Mar­tin Luther King Jr. Edu­ca­tion­al Com­plex next door. Stu­dents there tend to have a rougher time of it than their neigh­bors across 65th street.

While Laguardia coasts on its rep­u­ta­tion, MLK has nev­er real­ly got­ten out from under the trou­bling sto­ries left over from its bad old days. (Its orig­i­nal incar­na­tion was ordered closed in 2005 as part of sweep­ing city­wide edu­ca­tion­al reforms. These days, the build­ing hous­es sev­en small­er schools.)

Hope­ful­ly, the library’s teen patrons won’t seek to com­plete their pro­fes­sion­al look by check­ing out pants and pumps. The Grow Up pro­gram isn’t set up to pro­vide the full-body cov­er­age offered by like­mind­ed non-prof­its Dress for Suc­cess and Career Gear… though its bor­rowed bags and ties are cleared to attend prom and grad­u­a­tion.

via Men­tal Floss

Relat­ed Con­tent:

New York Pub­lic Library Card Now Gives You Free Access to 33 NYC Muse­ums

Med­i­ta­tion is Replac­ing Deten­tion in Baltimore’s Pub­lic Schools, and the Stu­dents Are Thriv­ing

100 Nov­els All Kids Should Read Before Leav­ing High School

Ayun Hal­l­i­day is an author, illus­tra­tor, the­ater mak­er and Chief Pri­ma­tol­o­gist of the East Vil­lage Inky zine.  Join her in NYC on Mon­day, Sep­tem­ber 24 for anoth­er month­ly install­ment of her book-based vari­ety show, Necro­mancers of the Pub­lic Domain. Fol­low her @AyunHalliday.

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