The alumni interview is not the time for a tee shirt and jeans, and decidedly not the time for shorts, sweat pants, or other athletic gear. Keep in mind that some interviewers are professionals, and they expect you to present yourself in the same way. Yes, the interview is informal, but that does not mean pajamas. You do not need to wear a suit or tie, but make sure that you have at least combed your hair, put on clean clothing, and look presentable. Another tip is to make sure that you dress modestly, as that will emphasize your maturity.
For the Gentlemen
- If you absolutely must wear jeans (though not recommended), wear a nice clean shirt. This means muscle shirts, really tight shirts, and tank tops are out.
- Refrain from wearing sneakers or flip flops.
- If you wear a button-down shirt, only the top button should be undone.
- To look your best, we suggest slacks, a button-down shirt, and casual shoes. It is hard to go wrong with an outfit like that.
For the Ladies
- If you insist on wearing jeans, wear a decent shirt with them.
- No sneakers and no flip flops.
- While low-cut shirts might be fashionable, they are appropriate for interviews. Halter tops and tight shirts also don’t make the cut.
- If you wear a button-down shirt, only the top button should be open, if any, depending on the shirt.
- Having your shoulders covered and sporting a neckline that does not go very far below your neck is also recommended.
- Feel free to wear pants, a skirt, or capris, but make sure that your lower accouterments go down to your knees. If you are not sure, try this test: knee down! If your garment is not touching the ground when you kneel, what you are wearing is too short for an interview.
- Jewelry is fine, but should be tasteful and in moderation.
- Perfume/cologne is not advised, but apply lightly if you use any.
- Remember to wear deodorant!
You might be asking why this is such a big deal. It is not news to you that people are judged by their clothes. Regardless of whether or not that is fair, you want to be dressed in a way that allows the interviewer to judge you for who you are, not what your clothing says. It can be difficult to pay attention to an interviewee when their immodest dress causes discomfort or unease.
Since the interviewer is aiming to make you look good to the admissions committee, start the process with a smart, clean-cut presentation!