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Career fair spotlights fashion for job interviews

Faculty members and student volunteers from Georgia Highlands College quite literally strutted up and down a catwalk Wednesday as an emcee described why — or why not — the outfit they were wearing would be appropriate for a job interview.

The Dress For Success fashion show was just one part of the college’s first-ever Passport to Success college and career fair, an event geared toward helping students prepare to transfer schools or enter the workforce. Event organizers said the fair went especially well for the first go-round.

“I think it went well. I think the students got some good information from the college fair and the career fair. Our professionals said students were stopping by,” said Alison Lampkin of the GHC Advancement Office. “The career people were thrilled about the fashion show.”

During that fashion show men and women took turns taking turns at the end of the runway in outfits described as either appropriate for a job interview, or not quite right in one way or another. Some of the no-go items included gaudy jewelry, sunglasses, shorts, flip-flops, tennis shoes and T-shirts.

Lampkin said she hopes students were paying attention because some of the fair participants representing the almost 20 local businesses said they have seen students come to interviews in outfits that immediately ended their chance of landing a job.

The key, she said, is to look professional.

The college and career fair featured short informational sessions about buying a home, managing debt, creating a resume, and balancing work and school. Also, part of the event was an alumni panel discussion.

A local bank president, school superintendent, medical center administrator and Rome News-Tribune staff writer told students about the role the college has played in their lives. Students, in turn, asked questions about networking, choosing a major or career path, and what the panelists might have changed about their college careers.

Lampkin said Passport to Success is set to be an annual event, and planning for next year will start soon. She said she’s already received a lot of good feedback that will help make the event better every year.

“We’re going to get together and talk about it,” she said. “Work out the dos and don’ts.”

WOMEN

Do – wear suit, skirt, blouse, heels & hose

NO sundresses, or bare shoulders

No sunglasses on head as a head band

TAKE OUT all facial piercing

VERY Light of perfume or cologne

DON’T Smoke prior to interview, you smell of it!

Don’t – overdo the jewelry with bangles and large earrings, NO open toe shoes, like sandals and flip flops

Carry a small purse to put your keys, phone and sunglasses in when you arrive.

Turn cell phone off

NO chewing gum, no slumping or chewing nails.

MEN

Shirt and tie a must, belt with pants and dress shoes

NO loud tie and bright shirt. Shirt MUST be tucked in and no sagging pants

NO Hats or sunglasses