CLASP Students group shot shopping at JC Penny
CLASP Students group shot shopping at JC Penny

On March 27, 2021, Longwood’s Collaborating with Lancers for Academic Success Program (CLASP), attended their first Suit-Up event sponsored by JCPenney in Richmond, VA. CLASP was created by Dr. Erica Brown-Meredith and Dr. Quentin Alexander in 2017 to work with underrepresented students at Longwood University to provide tools and opportunities for persistence and personal growth.

Suit-Up is a national event held annually to assist minority, first generation, and transfer students in their pursuit to learn about and purchase professional attire for future jobs and internships. Cosmetologists and clothing fitters were also provided by JCPenney to ensure each student received as much coaching as possible for their future endeavors and opportunities after college.

A month prior to the event, CLASP students received multiple presentations from the Longwood Black Alumni Association (LBAA) that would help them secure a job after college or prepare for graduate school. At the event, the LBAA mentors met the CLASP students to assist students while they selected clothes and to offer advice.  

After a successful experience, CLASP will continue to partner with JCPenney each spring to assist students with their desire to reach economic and social mobility.

For students wanting to learn more about the CLASP program and how to get involved, please reach out to Dr. Erica Brown-Meredith at