Matthew Clark's college wardrobe regimen consisted of jeans and a T-shirt, shaving once a week and a baseball cap " "always a baseball cap," he said. Today, he's a dapper young professional, donning suits and shaving daily.
He has done what so many recent grads fail miserably at: seamlessly evolving from student to professional.
Clark, who graduated from Oklahoma Christian University with a master's degree in finance, had some help: the professional dressing workshop offered through his new employer, Claimetrics.
An Oklahoma City-based workers compensation claims management company, Claimetrics has implemented a "Dress for Success" workshop for all new hires since 2005.
"We have a unique culture at Claimetrics that includes a professional style of dress, in addition to a professional attitude," said Linda Hill, Claimetrics regional vice president.
PROFESSIONAL VS. CASUAL
To Hill, there has been a widening gap between what's considered professional and casual.
"It seems like each year, what we think of as 'casual dress' becomes more and more relaxed. Dressing casually used to mean something completely different," she said. "Teaching these young men and women the tools they need to present themselves professionally is more important than ever."
Learning what it takes to look professional, said Hill, is an important step in succeeding in today's business environment.
"If they learn these habits now, they become ingrained in their mentality and can take them further in their chosen careers," she said. "Jenny Coon Peterson