Nomination interview attire

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by icarus, Sep 27, 2012.

  1. icarus

    icarus Member

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    I have read that most MOC and Senatorial SA nomination interviews are done over the phone.
    Our MOC's office is nearby and I believe that the interview is done by a panel in person.
    Is it alright to go to an interview in CAP or JROTC uniform?
    Should DS/DD just wear a shirt and tie/dress instead?

    Thanks
     
  2. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    This topic is debatable. And many have debated it. Some think that you should have a lot of pride in being in CAP or JrROTC, and therefor should wear your uniform. I disagree. The only person I believe who should wear their uniform is an active duty military enlisted person. 1) They will be doing some interviews possibly with their commander or similar, so their military uniform is the norm. Also; any other interviews it's appropriate because you ARE in the military. Thus, a military uniform is appropriate.

    CAP and JrROTC are NOT military. Some may believe it is a pseudo branch of the military, but it isn't. To wear your CAP/JrROTC uniform would, in my opinion, seem presumptuous and give the impression that somehow you feel you are already part of the military and should be recognized as such. Same with wearing a Boy Scout uniform. If you worked part time at Burger King and had a professional attire for that, would you wear that? I always suggest wearing shirt/tie (Jacket if you have one). Ladies; business attire or nice skirt/dress non-formal business looking. This is basically the Job Interview of your life. Treat it as such. But I don't recommend wearing a CAP/JrROTC uniform. What are you trying to show/prove? Your resume/application already says you're in CAP/JrROTC. You don't need to show them. And you definitely don't need to give an impression of: "See, I wear a uniform too. I'm just like the military."

    Anyway; that's always been my opinion. And always will be. But there are some that will disagree and debate my opinion.
     
  3. icarus

    icarus Member

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    My kid has been advised to show up as if it's an interview that's worth a $400k scholarship and to dress semi-formal.
    We were at a SA forum last week and noticed a few uniformed kids and felt that to be presumptuous as well.
    Thanks for sharing your view and pointing us in the right direction.
     
  4. batmom

    batmom Member

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    What to wear?

    I am simply a mom with a comment...
    My son went to his interview in a suit and tie and I must say that he looked very handsome... He was selected as the Principal Nominee to the Air Force- where he is currently a C4C and he was a Principal Alternate to the Naval Academy. I do not believe that his suit won him those nominations, but I do believe that this may be one of the most important interviews of their lives. I therefore think that it is utterly important to go into these interviews with your "best foot forward" and I therefore think it is imperative that the young men and women dress in a very professional and dignified manner. This interview can well determine whether or not they are ranked in the top position and thus are offered appointments to the various academies.
     
  5. MN-Dad-2016

    MN-Dad-2016 Member

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    Last year, we dropped off our DS to two different interviews in one day. A coat and tie were on every male applicant that we observed.
     
  6. Blackbird

    Blackbird Parent

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    I agree that candidate dress should be appropriate for the interview of their life. An additional thought is that this true even if the interview is over the phone. Dressing formally for a phone interview will help the candidate mentally be prepared for the interview and keep them in the appropriate mindset while being interviewed.
     
  7. greentrees

    greentrees Member

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    FYI - DS (current C1C) had a friend on an exchange semester to West Point last year who was interviewing by phone for the USAFA Cadet Wing Commander position for the following semester. He dressed in his Service Dress just like he would have if the interview had been in person, and sat at attention too. Turns out one of the first questions they asked him was what he was wearing. MOCs might not ask, but if they do would you really want to admit jeans & T-shirt?
     
  8. Usafamom2016

    Usafamom2016 Member

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    My DS had no interview at all with MOCs, they went solely on resume (he got senatorial). Our debate was the interview with ALO which was at our home. Felt strange wearing suit at home so he wore USAFA polo shirt, went over very well. :smile:
     
  9. CAP Commander

    CAP Commander Member

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    I'm a Squadron Commander for Civil Air Patrol and I would agree with what Christcorp posts above. It would be more appropriate to be in a suit and tie. Feel free to share your Civil Air Patrol experience during the interview though as it will demonstrate to the MOC or Panel that you have exposure to military customs and courtesies and have already acted upon your desire for this type of lifestyle.

    And here's a bit of friendly advice for parents. Allow your son or daughter to do this on their own. My son is a C4C at the Academy now. I drove him to his MOC interview (only because it was in the city and about an hour away) but I patiently waited outside. When he came out he shared two stories with me.

    1) He was the only candidate there without a parent. The panel questioned him on this and he responded by stating that this was his interview and not his parents and he simply never thought of bringing his parents along! It got a chuckle out of the panel!

    2) If you do tag along, don't follow your son or daughter into the interview. He actually told me that one parent attempted to do this and felt it was probably the "kiss of death" for this poor candidate.
     
  10. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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    My sons wore suits & ties for congressional interviews, as did all the young men. The young ladies wore dress suits, no pants.

    when the B&G officer came to our home to interview TwinA, he wore "business casual" or "church clothes" or what we thought passed for such in a 17 year old. He had on nicely pressed khaki's and a pressed shirt (with buttons and collar, no polo) and oxford type shoes (laces, not loafers or sneakers). Turns out the B&G officer was dressed the same.

    It is the interview that can change your life. I would, in the strongest possible terms, NOT recommend jeans or sweatpants.
     
  11. LFry94

    LFry94 USAFA C1C '17

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    I wore a suit and tie and every person I saw at the interviews I went to wore a suit and tie.
     
  12. dohdean

    dohdean Member

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    In Colorado, all congressional interviews are conducted in a personal interview so clothing choices are important. My daughter wore a business suit and I still think (from what we observed) that is the best choice for young men and women. From what we observed females should wear business attire -- preferably a suit of a modest length, with an appropriate blouse (not low cut) and reasonable dress shoes. Wear no more than minimal makeup -- a little lip gloss, a little blush, etc. This is not a fashion show -- this is a business interview and you should look at it as a business interview. There is no reason that your parents cannot accompany you to the building (in some cases this could be a long drive requiring a parent to be involved) -- at some interviews parents will be required to wait at the ground floor of the building where the interview is conducted -- others may allow the parent(s) to wait in a waiting area. Parents should not enter the interview room or speak to the interviewers. These are supposed to be unbiased interviews -- parents should not attempt to interject themselves into the interview process -- it only makes your son or daughter look bad. Think about this as a business interview -- what would you/your son or daughter wear if they were interviewing for a job in a major law firm or similar business? An interviewee can't go wrong wearing professional clothing to this interview and conducting themselves accordingly.
     
  13. Melitzank

    Melitzank Member

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    A good friend of mine from my youth group recently had his interview and I know he definitely wore a suit and tie and dress shoes...definitely something to dress up for...never dress down for this type of thing!
     
  14. dlee96

    dlee96 Member

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    If I may, I've talked to a congressional staffer and well-shined shoes are a plus as well (might not be the same for all MOCs), just my $0.03
     
  15. Wing77

    Wing77 Member

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    We had to practically tackle our daughter to force her to wear business attire. She was glad we did. Everyone had a suit on. One other benefit - we do now have a very funny photo of her wearing something she will likely never wear again.
     
  16. profsparrow

    profsparrow Member

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    DS wore a sports coat, dress pants and tie, and was very concerned about an appropriate tie, the shine on his shoes, and the buttons on his coat. He spent time in front of a mirror to make sure his hair was "just right." His shirt and pants were starched and ironed, by him. The shirt and pants stayed on a hanger until we arrived for the MOC interview and he changed in the bathroom so that his shirt and pants would be as "crisp" as possible. He did the same for his ALO interview and his BGO interview. He desperately wanted to serve our nation as an officer, like many other prospects. He chose to pay this much attention to detail with no "pushing" from his parents. IMHO all prospects should do the same. It's just that important. Both his ALO and BGO told him that a polo shirt and dockers would be just fine, but he chose to go over and above. Who knows if it made a difference or not on their evals, all ALOs, MOCs, and BGOs are different and look at differing things and weigh things differently. DS is currently a member of USNA class of 2016. All those things in choosing prospects for the Military academies sometimes come down to the smallest details, maybe a few faster seconds on the mile, one or two more pull-ups, missing Eagle Scout by one or two merit badges perhaps. Don't let clothes worn during an interview be one of them.
     
  17. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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    Despite my sons' suits and ties, they still had not cut their hair. Do any of you happen to remember THOSE TWINS WITH THE H.U.G.E. HAIR? Afro-types, over a foot long. They weren't going to cut that until they had to do so.

    Now, four and a half years later, they ask me: Mom, why didn't you make me cut my hair? Yeah, like I was going to have an argument over hair.
     
  18. ccfletch

    ccfletch Member

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    My daughter and son both worn their military uniforms. They attend a military school and wear military uniform everyday unlike JROTC and CAP who occasionally wear the uniforms. If you were the military uniform, make sure your shoes are shined and all creases, ribbons, etc are correct. If you wear civilian cloths make sure your attire is appropriate. Remember to shine your shoes.
     
  19. Dad

    Dad Member

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    There are some who feel strongly both ways. Consider why you would wear your uniform. Let that be your guiding light.
     
  20. 2017KNR

    2017KNR Member

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    A more specific question:

    What is everyone's opinion of a dark gray/black suit, shirt, and tie vs. khaki pleated slacks, navy blazer, shirt, and tie?
     

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