ROTC Interview

Pierce580

New Member
Hi i'm going to be having my NROTC interview in the next few weeks and was wondering what to wear, I have a suit but is that too much and if so what would be more appropriate. Also if you have any other tips on what to bring, do, or how to prepare for the interview let me know, any help would be appreciated.
 

brob

Member
Hi i'm going to be having my NROTC interview in the next few weeks and was wondering what to wear, I have a suit but is that too much and if so what would be more appropriate. Also if you have any other tips on what to bring, do, or how to prepare for the interview let me know, any help would be appreciated.
Some additional ideas:
  • The interviewer can already see what you put on your application, so no need to repeat all the accomplishments you listed there - find another way to relate your abilities as scholar, athlete, leader - and/or expand on what is on your application in a way that the written space did not allow you to do.
  • For my DD, ROTC was not at all about the money (though that's a nice fringe benefit) - her excitement about her future began when she she met an ROTC student on a college visit in September senior year. DD had researched the opportunities offered by ROTC and was able to share this enthusiasm with interviewer.
  • DD's app didn't show the typical leadership such as team captain or class president - so she made sure to describe how she has grown as a leader through volunteerism, her job, and other ways.
  • Dress conservatively - I personally do not think a suit is overkill for a young man, but if not a suit, then dress pants (khakis only if pressed and if they will remain looking that way by the time you arrive for interview), button down shirt and definitely a tie and shined shoes. Neat nails and haircut. You want to look as though it matters (it does!) so put some effort into your appearance. For young women, conservative colors (my DD wore navy blue) in a daytime dress or skirt (not too short!) or pants and top - NO flip-flops, leggings or yoga pants!!! and NO cleavage or bra straps showing. Limited makeup, simple jewelry, neat hairstyle. No fragrance for men or women.
  • Don't be afraid to smile and show your personality! DD went in smiling and came out smiling and still engaged in conversation with the Col!
 

AROTC-dad

Moderator
5-Year Member
Use common sense.

In some areas a suit may be overkill (Hawaii, Phoenix). Business casual can work in those regions.

In other areas formal dress is essential (Washington DC, New York).

The MOC interview for Service Academies tend to be more formal than the ROTC officer interviews.

When in doubt, lean towards the more formal outfit.







 
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My kids brought a copy of their resume as well since it provided more info than the app.
As for dress, my son wore business casual - khakis and button down shirt with a v-neck sweater or a blazer. He had a couple of suits from doing debate but I thought a suit was overkill and he didn't feel comfortable wearing it for this occasion. But if your son wants to wear a suit, and that makes him feel more confident, make sure it fits well and is a classic shade, such as Navy Blue or Charcoal/Light Grey. Wear a traditional white or pale blue shirt - no black shirt and purple tie. :) Having judged a lot of high school debate tournaments, I've seen a lot of misfitting suits (because they were bought off the rack and had no tailoring, such as is done at a Jos Banks), and odd color choices, like black and a dark shirt (they looked like they were attending a funeral as opposed to a debate).
I think interviewers are more concerned that the applicant woke up and put some thought into what they chose to wear in anticipation of the interview, as opposed to how formal they dressed - i.e., shorts vs. a pair of khakis. The interviewers realize that the applicants come from all socio economic classes, so not all can afford or even have a suit and/or tie.
Both interviews were more casual than formal (the interviewer for Navy was washing his car while he interviewed my son). And all interviews were successful in terms of receiving a scholarship.
As respects questions, both were asked about leadership examples. So, your son should think of this area, especially if he had to make a decision that was not popular.
 

5Day

Member
Also bring a copy of all the paperwork you have had to submit especially the forms that get filled out.

A suit is appropriate. And I would have a my hair cut to regulation, or at least close.
 

AROTC-dad

Moderator
5-Year Member
It doesn't have to be a complete men's suit.

A Navy blazer plus beige or gray dress slacks and a simple pair of brown or black dress shoes should be obtainable for less than $200.
A thrift store could get you there for less than $50.

You will need an interview outfit many times in the future. This is an essential investment.
 

Jcleppe

5-Year Member
You could wear what my younger son wore to his interview, Running shorts and a T Shirt. Of course he did his interview right after doing PT with the Battalion.

Older son wore slacks and a button down shirt and tie, no jacket.
 
It doesn't have to be a complete men's suit.

A Navy blazer plus beige or gray dress slacks and a simple pair of brown or black dress shoes should be obtainable for less than $200.
A thrift store could get you there for less than $50.

You will need an interview outfit many times in the future. This is an essential investment.
I think a blazer and slacks is perfect - but just not brown shoes with a gray suit please. :)
 

brob

Member
Use common sense.

In some areas a suit may be overkill (Hawaii, Phoenix). Business casual can work in those regions.

In other areas formal dress is essential (Washington DC, New York).

The MOC interview for Service Academies tend to be more formal than the ROTC officer interviews.

When in doubt, lean towards the more formal outfit.







Fantastic visuals - a picture is worth a thousand words!
 

doireann

Member
My son went to both NROTC and AROTC interviews dressed business casual. He also answered every single answer with Sir and Maam (NROTC interview was female). He brought a binder with a copy of his application and looked at the interviewer in the eye when answering questions.
 
Dress to impress. Know your audience. Your interviewer probably wears a suit most every day - so should you. If you were being interviewed for a future enlisted position, I would dress business casual. Look smart, act smart, be smart.

U.S. Navy cufflinks are a nice touch.

https://goldenknightbattalion.com/2017/12/29/the-interview-2017-edition/
Per the link:
"No one expects you to go buy a business suit or fancy dress but you should take it seriously. More appropriate attire includes items such as slacks and a buttoned-down collared shirt"
Perfect advice. As the dad of two successful AFROTC and NROTC scholarship applications, the above was the advice they followed. Interviewers will understand that not all kids can afford a shopping spree. As long as the kid's appearance shows that he or she put thought into how they are dressed, the interviewer will look at the character inside, and not if a new suit and tie was purchased.
I still think a suit is not needed, especially since most high schools kids do not own a well-fitted suit and they don't look comfortable in one (I see this as a speech and debate judge). And not to be critical, but cufflinks? Now the kid has to go buy a new style of shirt, and these are usually more expensive. Plus cufflinks just don't look right on 17 year-old.
 
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