Park Rapids High School reinstates ‘career closet’

The Panther Career Closet offers students outfits appropriate for contests, job shadowing and interviews.

Park Rapids Area High School students paw through the Panther Career Closet, a room in the administration area with racks of clothes donated by the community. According to community career collaboration coordinator Krystal Murphy, the closet provides outfits needed for students to participate in contests, attend job interviews and do job shadowing.
Contributed / Krystal Murphy
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Park Rapids Area High School has established a “Panther Career Closet” for students dressing up for competitions, job shadowing and employment interviews.

The kids are appreciative, because they were asking about the closet to come back, and it came back with a force.
Krystal Murphy, Park Rapids Area High School "4C"

Krystal Murphy, the community career collaboration coordinator (4C) at the high school, told participants in Thursday’s ACTION Park Rapids meeting about it.

“The community was tremendously generous,” she said. “I mean, it broke my clothing racks! There were so many clothes that were donated in such a short amount of time.”

Many of the donations were anonymous, she said.

“The kids are appreciative,” said Murphy, “because they were asking about the closet to come back, and it came back with a force.”


For those still cleaning out their closets, she added, “a lot of contests or some job shadows require white button-up dress shirts, if anyone has those, or black dress pants. Those are the big two things right now.

“These are things that kids can wear if they have an interview, if there’s a family function when they have to dress up. I know some come around, especially when it gets to be before winter break. They like to get their nice clothes.”

She added that students may also want the dress shirts and slacks for band concerts or FFA contests. “It’s all kids that are utilizing this closet,” she said. “That’s why it’s there.”

Murphy said a room at the high school holds a couple wardrobe racks where clothes are color-coordinated, including entire suits.

“It looks like a storefront,” she said. “We have a display for all the ties, (for example) because in BPA it’s a requirement for all the guys to have ties. That’s a requirement at the national level. So, there are certain things we’re trying to fulfill so that everyone can compete.”

Performances will be held at 7 p.m. Dec. 9-10 and 3 p.m. on Dec. 10 at the auditorium.

Robin Fish is a staff reporter at the Park Rapids Enterprise. Contact him at or 218-252-3053.
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