What to Wear


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Plan carefully what you wear to business events. What you wear is a reflection of you and speaks volumes about how serious you are about the internship and job search and how professional you will be on the internship and job.

Business Casual

Business casual is a style of dress slightly more casual than traditional business or interview attire. It may be appropriate when you want to make a professional impression but traditional business attire may be too formal, such as when conducting an informational interview, attending a casual networking event or an employer indicates such attire is expected. There is not one consistent definition for business casual. Research what is appropriate for the industry.

Women

  • Nice trousers or dress slacks, no jeans
  • Knee length skirts or dresses in a variety of colors depending on the field
  • Cotton or silk blend blouses and patterned shirts with collars in a variety of sleeve lengths. No visible cleavage.
  • Light-weight sweaters
  • Fashionable jacket or cardigan
  • Low heels, nice flats or fashion boots, open-toe shoes may be acceptable in warmer weather. No athletic shoes, flip flops or sandals with straps between the toes
  • Simple accessories
  • Tights may be acceptable in cooler weather. No fishnet or extremely colorful or large patterned stockings
  • No yoga pants, leggings, or tunics as dresses

Men

  • Dress slacks in tan, gray, and dark blue, or ironed khaki or chino pants, no jeans
  • Shirts in a range of colors that might not be appropriate with a suit, with or without a tie
  • Polo shirts may be acceptable, no golf or t-shirts
  • Nice sweaters
  • Jackets, blazers or sport coats may be optional
  • Simple leather loafers in black or brown
  • A watch for jewelry
  • No athletic wear or casual footwear such as athletic shoes, deck shoes, sandals or flip flops

See our Pinterest boards for ideas of appropriate interview and work attire:

Dress for Success - Women

Dress for Success - Men

Business Professional

It is important to know the appropriate attire for your field. Dress conservatively with careful attention to grooming, hair neat and fingernails clean, and have your clothes ironed. The following suggestions may be helpful.

Women

  • Tailored clothing with no frills, ruffles, thin straps, plunging necklines, or exposed cleavage
  • Suits and blazers in plain, neutral colors or understated patterns
  • Dresses in dark colors, with or without blazers
  • Scarves for color accents
  • Skirts at the knee and without slits
  • Sheer hose with skirts or dresses or calf-length stockings with pants
  • Basic dark pumps with medium or low heels, no sandals, flip flops or open-toe shoes
  • Simple jewelry
  • No overpowering perfume

Men

  • Dark or gray suits (solid, pinstripe or shadow plaid)
  • Solid color dress shirts with collars
  • Ties coordinated with the shirts (solids, stripes or small patterns)
  • Calf-length socks in dark colors to match suits
  • Dressy leather shoes, no boots or athletic shoes
  • Black or brown 1-inch belts to match shoes
  • Only a watch for jewelry
  • No overpowering aftershave or cologne