By Alec Matuszak
Since the fall of 2013, LIU has been focused on promoting student-run businesses. Some of which have been reimagined. The Student Body Boutique and LIU Post Treat Shop, Hutton and Post have seen several changes, in an effort to rebrand the businesses and attract more customers.
Sandra Angilletta, an art therapy major, works at the Student Body Boutique. According to Angilletta, “the grand re-opening was to reach out to the whole LIU student body and to let them know that there were some renovations and that there are going to be a lot of changes coming,” she said. Some of these changes include management and inventory. “We really are just trying to reach out to the LIU community and give more awareness to the store,” she said. As with the other student run business at LIU Post, any profits made from the stores goes back into student scholarships. According to success coach and head of student-business development, Eric Shapiro, fifty percent of profits go to student scholarships while the other fifty percent of profits go back into student-business development.
Before getting the job at the Student Body Boutique, Angiletta said she did not visit the store very frequently. Angiletta is satisfied with the trajectory the store is going in, but realizes that changes must be made in “baby steps.”
Another student invested in the success of the student run businesses is junior public relations major, Monica Peralta. Peralta has been involved since the program launched at LIU Post three years ago. Peralta also has a minor in fashion merchandising, which explains her employment at the Student Body Boutique. As the head of product development for all of the stores, Peralta helps design new products for Pioneer Nation (the campus merchandise store) and purchases inventory for the boutique and Hutton and Post (the new name for the treat shop). Peralta said she has learned a lot throughout her time working for these student businesses. “Being a part of student run businesses, I kind of got to put my hand in all the cookie jars,” she said. “Not only do I develop new products for the stores but I got to help promote them and get a little into social media, hiring, and management,” she said. Peralta hopes that all of these options can help her figure out what field she wants to go into after graduation.
Peralta does not take her opportunity to work for these stores for granted. “Being a part of the original committee with student run businesses, it is such a joy to see us branch out and create more opportunities for students to open more businesses and venture out into different industry,” Peralta said. For example, Peralta said if there was interest in opening an event planning company, this could be possible. “Anything that anyone is interested in and has a passion for,” she said. “We are at the very beginning stages still and it’s just so fascinating to see the program unfold,” she concluded.