Interview Preparation

Dressing for Interviews and Career Fairs

The Missouri S&T Career Fair requires Professional Dress for entry.  Below is a guide to help students understand professional dress.  For reference, please see photos of students from previous fairs. 


Clothes Should Be:

  • Solid, dark or neutral colors
  • Light colors can be worn underneath
  • A solid color two-piece suit (jacket and pants/skirt/dress) with blouse or collared shirt with tie
  • Closed-toe heel or dress shoes
    • Shoes and belt should be in matching color

General Recommendations

  • Clothes should be in good condition, wrinkle and lint free
  • Neat and clean dress shoes
  • Hair should be well groomed
  • Nails and makeup should be natural in style
  • Optional: wear moderate jewelry and/or mild fragrance

Unacceptable Career Fair Professional Dress Examples

  • Tennis shoes, sandals
  • Shorts, sweats, jeans, mini skirts
  • Polos, hoodies, t-shirts

Interviewing Etiquette

You never have a second chance to make a first impression. Make sure you are presenting your best self when interviewing for the career of your dreams.

Research the company with whom you are interviewing. Nothing impresses an interviewer more than a candidate who knows about the company. It shows that you have initiative. You should also research Common Interview Questions so you are prepared. If you are interviewing for a teaching position, you should practice your answers to common interview questions for teaching positions.

Additional resources

Conduct Successful Interviews

Preparing for a Behavioral Interview




Arrive to the interview on time. The importance of punctuality cannot be overstressed. Plan to arrive about 15 minutes early because it shows your regard for the interviewer’s time. If you have to wait, use the time to go over your notes.

Professional dress shows you cared enough about the interviewer and the company to present yourself in a professional manner. In today’s work place, many companies do not have a strict dress code; however, during the interview you should err on the side of formality.

Practice makes perfect. Now is the time to put the information you obtained about successful interviewing to good use. Practice your responses; have a friend go over the questions with you until you are able to answer them promptly and confidently.

Practice online using Big Interview, or schedule an appointment with a Career Advisor to discuss interview strategy and how to utilize Big Interview. You can schedule an in-person or virtual appointment with an advisor on Handshake.

Give the interviewer a firm handshake and maintain eye contact. A firm handshake makes a good first impression. Nobody likes a limp handshake; however, be mindful and do not crush the person’s hand either. While shaking hands, introduce yourself and keep eye contact at all times.

Speak clearly and confidently. Smile and speak clearly. Mumbling portrays a lack of confidence. Listen attentively before you answer questions. Make sure you have understood the question. If you do not, ask the interviewer to clarify. Give brief answers, and answer promptly and intelligently. However, when asked yes or no questions, elaborate.

Ask the interviewer questions. Even if the interviewer does not ask if you have any questions, ask anyway. Two-thirds of your questions should be prepared. 

Be honest. If an employer asks you if you have experience or knowledge in a particular area and you do not – tell the truth. This will most likely not disqualify you from being hired; however, being caught in a lie most certainly will. Once you have acknowledged that you don’t know, you can turn your answer into a positive by discussing a related area in which you have experience or by describing traits that make you a fast learner. You can provide examples of times when you have had to learn a new subject in a short amount of time.

Be succinct. Keep your answers short and to the point. Do not chew gum, smoke or wear too much cologne/perfume. Chewing gum is distracting to an interviewer and will leave them with a bad impression of your professionalism. Do not chew gum before the interview or you may forget to remove it

Be mindful of fragrances. Do not smoke before an interview, and do not wear excessive cologne or perfume. Some people have allergies or are sensitive to certain smells.

Do not refuse a job offer during an interview. Do not refuse a job offer or communicate disinterest in an employer or a position during an interview. Keep your options open, and give yourself time to think about the information you receive in an interview. Your opinion may change upon reflection.

Write a thank-you. Send the interviewer a formal thank you within 24 hours of the interview. Follow up by phone or email two weeks after the indicated response time. Thank the interviewer for their time.