by Brooke Schaffer

I’m sure you’ve heard before that first impressions are everything. This saying holds true when it comes to potential employers and recruiters, as they form opinions about students within seconds of meeting. With Career Showcase just around the corner and various interviews on the horizon, you want to be sure to present yourself in the best light possible to make a dazzling first impression on potential employers. So, without further ado, let’s discuss some of the clothes you should steer clear of to assure that you make wonderful, professional first impressions at Career Showcase.

1. Be Aware of Clothes that Almost Fit

There’s nothing quite like pulling your pants out of the dryer, realizing they’re notably shorter and deciding that you might have to bring back high waters. Or maybe your weight has changed since high school but you are trying to convince yourself that your ninth-grade dress shirts totally still fit. We’ve all been there, but Career Showcase is not the time to wear something that doesn’t show you in your best light. Whether it’s a shirt that is too big or too tight, slacks that look more like capris or a skirt that is cutting it close in terms of length, these are all clothing items you should leave home on the days of Career Showcase.

2. Take Notice of Shoe Shortcomings

I realize that we live in Florida, but as much as you want to sport your flip-flops, Birkenstocks or favorite beachy sandals, you simply must ditch these shoes. On the other hand, if you’re thinking of showing off your sweet new Adidas tennis shoes because closed-toe shoes are a safer bet, then you’re still on the wrong track. It doesn’t matter if you’re stopping by Showcase in between classes: if you want to make a good impression, kick your tennis shoes to the curb for some appropriate and professional shoes.

3. Avoid Color Catastrophes

Do you have a particularly strong sense of style or an undying affinity for bright colors? I hate to break it to you, but potential employers (for the most part) probably won’t take kindly to crazy, colorful ensembles or over-the-top accessorizing. In order to look professional, you want to wear classic styles of clothing in muted colors or neutral tones. Toss your favorite funny tie, color-blocked outfit and over-the-top accessories aside. Instead, stick to traditional business professional looks in simple and understated patterns.

If you’d like to get an opinion on your Career Showcase attire, stop by the Career Connections Center for help. If you need assistance with getting proper suiting the Molm Family Gator Career Closet has a wide variety of offerings for feminine and masculine professional and business casual attire. The closet lends clothes to UF students free of charge and is there to help you nail your professional outfits for that great first impression!