There are several components associated with gaining admission to your college of choice. If you’re serious about attending a top-notch school, you’ve probably already spent several years in high school earning good grades, taking honors or AP courses, participating in extracurricular activities, and perhaps even rounding out your resume with charity work. You likely studied for and aced the PSATs, SATs, and possibly the ACTs. You’ve filled out applications, paid fees, and written a truly incredible essay to seal the deal. All that remains is to get through your college interviews, and like every other aspect of your education, you’re well prepared thanks to online tutorials and sample questionnaires. You just have to make sure that the clothing you wear to your interview doesn’t undo all your hard work by making a bad first impression.
The average high school student is perfectly comfortable wearing whatever casual clothing happens to be trendy at the moment. However, you can bet that anyone in charge of college admissions will set the bar a bit higher when it comes to personal appearance. Your friends might think sweater leggings, plaid flannel tops, and fold-down boots are super cute, but that doesn’t mean a college admissions officer will feel the same. If you want to impress the person responsible for deciding whether or not you gain admission to college, you need to dress to impress a professional.
This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to show up in a three-piece suit. However, business casual attire should be your minimum standard. For girls this means wearing a nice blouse with a skirt or slacks and skipping the sneakers in favor of flats or low heels. It’s probably best not to wear impractical high heels either. A nice dress could also work as long as it’s appropriate. You don’t want it to fit like a glove or to be too revealing. The idea is to create a look that would be acceptable for an office setting. If you have a dress that shows a bit too much on top, simply pair it with a camisole and add a blazer or cardigan to cover up.
Boys should go with a button up shirt and slacks for interviews. Even though many modern shirts are meant to be worn untucked, think about tucking your shirt and wearing a belt or suspenders for a more formal and sophisticated appearance. You could even wear a tie if you feel comfortable with it and add a jacket to your ensemble. Again, forget about gym shoes or Converse and opt for dressier shoes instead. You don’t have to wear Florsheims – it’s not a black tie event. Just select footwear that’s a step above what you wear on a daily basis.
Keep in mind that you’re not trying to impress your peers. You’re trying to make a good impression on a professional that potentially holds your academic future in his or her hands. This means you’ll have to step up your appearance. Whether you’re looking for entrance to an Ivy League institution or NSU Online, an interview requires appropriate clothing. So take time choosing an outfit that’s going to impress a college admissions officer from the moment you walk in the door.