Tori Fisher / Gavel Media

Dressing for Success(fully Getting an Internship)

Many juniors and seniors return to Boston College only to find a world of stress awaiting them. Career fairs, networking events, interviews—jobs and internships consume the mind. And at BC, your outfit better be top notch.

From the first day of classes, campus is littered with students in black, grey, and navy suits. Leather-bound pad-folio in hand, they hunt in packs for any and every professional networking event or information session occurring on campus. So what are CSOM moms buying their young professionals these days?

The unifying principle of the male internship-seeking outfit is the blazer. In accordance with the code of proper suit coordination, the blazer, obviously, must match the pants. The black or grey suit is the most traditional approach; however, some students employ a “pea-cocking” strategy by donning a navy or bolder-colored suit to demand attention. Wearing khakis and a blazer is the cardinal sin of internship-seeking.

Other layers of the ensemble include a button-down shirt (typically white, necessarily tucked in), brown or black dress shoes, a sleek tie, a black or brown belt (never a brown belt with a black suit), and, if prudent, a pin near the breast pocket. The key here is not to go overboard; employers can be put off by a student whose accessories appear more expensive than theirs.

The ensemble for internship-hungry young women most commonly includes a white blouse tucked into a skirt or pair of dress pants (typically black), and a blazer or cardigan of varying color. Shoes most often vary between flats and heels. Occasionally one will spot a slightly more casual look where sleeves are rolled-up over a cardigan and possibly a blazer.

For women, there seems to be far more variety in their outfits. This is helpful for the liberal arts majors, who can rarely distinguish one young CSOM boy from another.

Overall, a fairly common, uniform way of dressing has evolved for young professionals over the years—and if you ever want to fit in at BC, you best not depart from it.

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