Gannon holds Christmas gift donation drive


staff writer

Gannon University’s Support Staff Association (GUSSA) has partnered with Dress for Success to host a Christmas gift donation drive, which began Nov. 1 and will continue until Monday to collect items to help women.
Sharon Dugan, the Military Human Resource assistant, and Nancy Kelly, the current Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) secretary, are heading the project with GUSSA.
Dugan said that they will be accepting small items such as journals, photo frames, hats, gloves and scarves to give women as Christmas presents.
“My favorite part is that we are helping women of all ages feel good about themselves,” Dugan said.
In addition to small gifts, they will continue to take monetary donations as well as gently used clothing, Dugan said.
Gannon student Emily Whaley is one of the many students thinking about donating.
“I feel this is a good idea,” Whaley said.
“I like this better than donating random T-shirts or shorts. I think that’s smart.”
Cassidy Jelen, a freshman nursing student, agreed that this was a good idea.
According to Dress for Success’ website,, the nonprofit organization began in 1997 with the mission to help women feel empowered and to help them gain economic independence.
Dress for Success has helped by providing professional attire, development tools and a support network to over 925,000 women in over 21 countries and 145 cities, according to the website.
The organization typically collects business attire, scrubs, shoes and accessories, Dugan said. Other items include cosmetics and miscellaneous toiletries.
“I know those clothes are expensive and it makes a difference to go in and have something nice on in interviews,” Whaley said.
Dugan said Nancy Giannamore, the previous ROTC secretary, ignited the relationship with Dress for Success in May 2016.
Once Giannamore left Gannon, Dugan took over the project and GUSSA has been helping out, Dugan said.
Dugan has been involved with helping Dress for Success for about six years now.
Dugan said they typically hold three or four clothing drives events throughout the year.
“We ran a drive in August and it was a huge success,” Dugan said. “The Gannon community is very generous with donating the items we request.”
Dugan said they dropped 15 bags of clothing and four boxes of toiletries and accessories off to Dress for Success.
“The drive is going a little slow this year, but I am hoping by the deadline that we will have plenty of gifts to drop off,” Dugan said. “We have received some beautiful journals and scarves already.”
Those interested in donating can bring their donations to one of the following locations between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday: the ROTC office in Room 1056 of the Palumbo Academic Center; the Student Success Center, Room 1025 of Palumbo and the Mission and Ministry office, Kiem Commons
If you are unable to do so, GUSSA “will gladly pick them up,” Dugan said.
For more information about donations, contact Dugan at 814-871-7524 or Nancy Kelly at 814- 871-5893.
For additional information on Dress for Success visit the organization’s website at

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