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Engineering Interview Attire

by Michael Alpert, studioD

Wearing the right outfit for a job interview may not get you the job, but wearing the wrong one can definitely keep you from it. Whether you'll be working in an office, in the field, or both, engineers are considered white collar professionals and are expected to project a highly professional image. Before you are asked to represent a particular company or firm, you have to represent yourself first. The importance of choosing the right attire for an interview cannot be understated for any engineer.

General Suggestions

A tidy appearance communicates to an employer you are prepared and self-aware. Always opt for an outfit that will portray a neat, clean, and well-groomed image. Because many engineering interviews can be lengthy and with multiple people, choose an outfit that will be professional, yet comfortable and relatively relaxed. Be sure that all accessories are also appropriate. If you're a graduating student, for example, purchase or borrow a nice, leather portfolio rather than your worn-out backpack.

Attire for Men

According to the University of Missouri's Department of Engineering, male job seekers should wear a conservative suit or jacket with a simple tie. Nice dress shoes should be worn with dark dress socks so that no skin is visible when you sit down. Wear a belt that is in good condition and matches your shoes. Investing in high quality attire can be a valuable purchase. You will find many occasions in your adult life to put such clothes to use.

Attire for Women

Female engineering candidates have a variety of appropriate options for job interviews. Gray, black, navy, or tan suits are great options. Knee-length skirts should be worn with neutral-colored tights. Some jewelry and accessories are acceptable, don't overdo it. Wear simple, natural makeup and conservatively painted nails. Wear comfortable shoes and avoid platforms or stilettos.

What Not to Wear

The goal of an engineering interview is to make your personality and abilities noticeable, not your progressive fashion sense. Avoid wearing clothes that are too tight, bright, or have wild patterns. Be sure that all undergarments are sufficiently covered and go light on the cologne or perfume. Finally, keep your hear style and facial hair simple and neat. Beards and mustaches are neatly trimmed and hair, both long and short, is neatly combed or styled.

About the Author

Michael Alpert has been writing since 2002 and has published a variety of articles on business-related topics such as banking and personal finance. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Texas A&M University, a Master of Business Administration from Portland State University and a Master of Arts in Teaching from George Fox University.

Photo Credits

  • Digital Vision./Photodisc/Getty Images