Dressing for the College Admission Interview

Not all colleges require admissions interviews; however, many schools will encourage their applicants to schedule personal interviews with the dean of admissions or other members of the admissions board. These interviews allow the admissions counsel to meet the prospective student and talk to him or her about his/her academic ambitions or career goals. In addition, interviews also provide admissions officers with the chance to answer any questions the student may have about the school’s unique admissions policies and procedures or any other questions that come to mind.

In your efforts to best represent yourself to an admissions officer, you should be sure to take your appearance into account when you are preparing for a college admissions interview. Remember that your goal is to maintain a sense of professionalism so that admissions officers can see that you handle your responsibilities adequately, including the responsibility of self-maintenance.

When dressing for the college admissions interview, you should choose clothing items that are included in business casual to business attire. Young men should restrain themselves from wearing shorts or jeans and stick to business-appropriate slacks or even a suit. Dress shirts are also a good option, although in some cases, more casual collared shirts are also acceptable. Young women should ensure that their attire remains professional and demure. Shorts are also usually considered in appropriate for females. Skirts should be modest in length. All clothing also looks best when well ironed and free of wrinkles.

Grooming is also an important aspect of maintaining a professional appearance throughout the college admissions interview. Young men and women should remember to consider their hair styles prior to their individual meetings. Additionally, young men should remember to groom any facial hair.

Some individuals will advise students with facial piercings or outrageous hair styles and hair colors to “tone down” their appearances during the college admissions interview. I, however, feel that students should be allowed to represent themselves and their personalities as long as they retain their professionalism. Professionals in this day and age have different hairstyles. College admissions officers simply want to ensure that you are being honest and true to yourself during the interview; however, they also want to be sure that you are serious about your education and that you are responsible enough to live up to your commitments to the university, upholding college standards. Your outrageous hair and piercings will have nothing to do with your ability to commit and succeed.

On the whole, prospective college students should simply remember to maintain their professional appearances by adequately grooming themselves before college admissions interviews. While there may be pressure for students to tone down any modifications to their physical features, as long as students are clear and eloquent about their purposes within the college or university and are capable of producing answers for their interviewer, it’s more about what the student says than what they look like.