Dress clothes for conference/poster session

  • Thread starter Beeza
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Thats quite sad. Fire them all I say!

Seriously though, they should have some sort of dress code at the workplace. I wouldnt want my doctor walking in, in a t-shirt and shorts. I dont want guys building space craft that way either.
 
Astronuc
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Thats quite sad. Fire them all I say!

Seriously though, they should have some sort of dress code at the workplace. I wouldnt want my doctor walking in, in a t-shirt and shorts. I dont want guys building space craft that way either.
The guys who actually build the spacecraft wear clean suits.

e.g. - http://www2.jpl.nasa.gov/basics/cassini/lifeSize.gif

The folks at JPL for the most part do engineering, research and project management work.
 
Moonbear
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While this is certainly true, and it is always good to dress up nicely, I think it is less important in physics, where most of the audience are usually dressed sloppily. It definitely depends on the occasion, of course. If you are doing a seminar for a job interview (which is a common requirement in physics), then dressing up like a starving graduate student is definitely a no-no. However, I've seen many people giving a our division's seminar here dressed very casually, some time even in jeans. I think Sean Carrol (of Cosmic Variance fame) may have been one of them. Most people here couldn't care less how a speaker is dressed, as long as it isn't outrageous that it becomes a distraction.

And if anyone has been to one of the March or April Meetings where thousands of people show up and almost the same number presenting talks, one would have seen people dressed all the way from suits to t-shirt and jeans. As long as it isn't an inappropriate outfit, most don't really care how a person is dressed.

Zz.
And this is why I recommended asking one's mentor about the conference attire. I've seen some top people in my field give talks with jeans, cowboy boots, giant belt buckles, and a t-shirt on. The way I see it, they've earned the right to dress any way they want because they've already gained respect for their work. Besides, they're not out to impress anyone anymore. And, that's also why the one conference I attend is so casual, because the folks organizing it are of that group and want it to be casual, student-friendly, non-intimidating, non-stuffy, and just focus on the science. It's nice and it breaks down a lot of barriers going up and meeting other people. Though, I still have hang-ups about people giving platform talks while wearing jeans or shorts...it looks slouchy, like they just don't give a damn about what they're doing...I'd stick with khakis if it's an informal group.

But, then I attend meetings where your audience includes folks like physicians who you're trying to convince to listen to your science and start thinking about applying it in the clinic, and since they don't have the science background to know who to believe, you better wear a suit to present to them and convince them you are in a position of authority (physicians are all into dress codes to signal status...notice the difference in length of white coats on students vs physicians...the physicians are also the ones who wear their white coats to the cafeteria, which us scientists want to smack them for doing since we want whatever that coat is protecting them from left someplace other than the cafeteria, but to them, it might as well be just a suit jacket).

So, that's why I stick behind the best approach being to just ask the mentor who has been to the particular meeting before. There's just too much variation of what's acceptable or expected to be able to give an answer here that fits every meeting.
 
Moonbear
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Thats quite sad. Fire them all I say!

Seriously though, they should have some sort of dress code at the workplace. I wouldnt want my doctor walking in, in a t-shirt and shorts. I dont want guys building space craft that way either.
We have professionalism codes for the med students, and I think law students do as well. We're not as tough as it used to be. Med students used to have to wear a dress shirt and slacks to class every day. We let them wear jeans now, as long as they don't have holes and don't sag (we have interrupted a student in the lab to tell them to go pull their pants up when their underwear is sticking out). They have to dress up on the days they are seeing patients, though. And you're right, it's because patients aren't going to trust some "kid" walking in dressed like a slob.
 
Astronuc
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Astronuc, you are my hero.
I'm probably not a good example, since I tend to be contrarian and recalcitrant.

Are you hoping to make career contacts at the conference? If so, a little more formal attire is appropriate. Maybe not a full-blown suit, but slacks, shirt, and a tie. And clean dress shoes.
I would agree, if one is trying to impress potential employers or one wants to be taken seriously.

brewnog, JasonRox, cristo, ZapperZ, mbrmbrg, Moonbear, D H give good advice. I'm sure Evo would agree.

Cyrus overdoes it a bit, but he's generally correct.


Dress for success. Dress slacks, dress shirt, clean shoes, would be fine. A tie might be a good touch. If you have a jacket, and it's too warm, take it off and hang appropriately or drape it over the back of a chair.

Certainly at some point, as Cyrus indicated, it would be worthwhile to invest in a suit. It doesn't have to be a tux, but a nice 'fitted' jacket.

I'll wear a suit on occassion for those folks who would prefer I wear a suit. When I interviewed for a job, I wore a suit and tie. When we went out for lunch, I left the jacket behind, but still wore the tie.

A golf shirt might be a bit too casual, so a nice dress shirt would probably be better.
 
Moonbear
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Dress for success. Dress slacks, dress shirt, clean shoes, would be fine. A tie might be a good touch. If you have a jacket, and it's too warm, take it off and hang appropriately or drape it over the back of a chair.
Oh, which raises another important point about conferences...room temperature! Most hotels and convention centers seem to have issues with temperature control...I don't know if it's the way the place is designed, or that they keep turning the temperature up and down as people complain one way or the other, but it is almost NEVER comfortable in those rooms. Usually, they seem to be far too cold, but once in a while, after the room is filled, they seem to start heating up, like the air handling just can't keep up with all the bodies in there. Anyway, an advantage to wearing a suit with a jacket is that when it gets cold, you can put on the jacket, and if it gets warm, you can take it off. If a suit is over-dressed, bring a sport jacket that you can wear with jeans, khakis, or dress slacks.

If you wear a sport jacket with a dress shirt and casual pants and keep a tie in your pocket, you're set for most occasions other than the most formal. That's the other issue with conferences...it's not just the attire people wear to the conference, but that you might get an impromptu invitation to join a group of people to head out somewhere for dinner, and that could range anything from a pub to a nice "jacket and tie required" type restaurant, depending on who you meet up with. The casual pants and sport coat can fit in equally well for either place (you might feel a bit under dressed in the fancy restaurant, but at least they'll let you in the door).
 
Astronuc
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Oh, which raises another important point about conferences...room temperature! Most hotels and convention centers seem to have issues with temperature control...I don't know if it's the way the place is designed, or that they keep turning the temperature up and down as people complain one way or the other, but it is almost NEVER comfortable in those rooms. Usually, they seem to be far too cold, but once in a while, after the room is filled, they seem to start heating up, like the air handling just can't keep up with all the bodies in there. Anyway, an advantage to wearing a suit with a jacket is that when it gets cold, you can put on the jacket, and if it gets warm, you can take it off. If a suit is over-dressed, bring a sport jacket that you can wear with jeans, khakis, or dress slacks.
I've noticed that too. :rolleyes:

I need to get some cards from Russ so I can give then to the hotel/meeting place folks. :biggrin: It's rare that someone doesn't have to get the A/C system adjusted - or it's too noisy.

If you wear a sport jacket with a dress shirt and casual pants and keep a tie in your pocket, you're set for most occasions other than the most formal. That's the other issue with conferences...it's not just the attire people wear to the conference, but that you might get an impromptu invitation to join a group of people to head out somewhere for dinner, and that could range anything from a pub to a nice "jacket and tie required" type restaurant, depending on who you meet up with. The casual pants and sport coat can fit in equally well for either place (you might feel a bit under dressed in the fancy restaurant, but at least they'll let you in the door).
Excellent advice. I'll usually have a tie in my pocket is I take a jacket. Sport coat is better than no coat if one gets invited to dinner.

The other thing is that one doesn't want to appear under-dressed compared to others. The market is competitive, so to get a foot in the door, do a little extra.
 
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As for temperature control, I hope it's not like that. I really cannot wear cotton dress shirts even with an undershirt. I still sweat right through both shirts and end up looking gross. I do not ever wear cotton t-shirts even casually and only wear mesh type shirts that breathe better or at the least the sweat does not show through. Yeah, I know it's gross. :)
 
f95toli
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The only people who wears suit+tie at the conferences I attend (physics) are older(70+) German professors and Japanese researchers (unless they are retired/highly respected; then apparently they don't need a tie). Even most of the Japanese PhD students have stopped wearing suits.
The only time I wear a even a sport jacket is if I am giving a talk. Otherwise I tend to wear a shirt+khakis, which tend to be what most people wear.
A PhD student is a full suit would really look out of place at a physics conference and no one dresses formally for a poster session. Wear whatever you feel comfortable in.
The only time you need might need a suit at a conference is if you are attending the conference dinner, but even then it is rare (it should say on the invitation).
 
Moonbear
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I've noticed that too. :rolleyes:

I need to get some cards from Russ so I can give then to the hotel/meeting place folks. :biggrin: It's rare that someone doesn't have to get the A/C system adjusted - or it's too noisy.
:biggrin: I was thinking of Russ the other day, when sitting in another cold, drafty hotel meeting room. They seem to blast out cold air to reach the set temperature, or start out freezing cold in the morning, then as people fill the room, and the day progresses, the cooling system can no longer keep up with the heat and the room warms up, and by the end of the day, everyone is dying of heat. I think that's why they start out with the room temp set so frigidly cold, because it's the only way to keep us from all suffocating when the temp starts rising later. It's just astonishing that EVERY hotel and convention center seems to be done exactly the same way.

A bit off-topic, we're supposed to be getting a new animal facility built in another 2 or 3 years (they're making some modifications to the existing facility now to hold us over until they can get the funds to build a new one), so I asked my department chair who gets to give input on those. He said they bring in external consultants to tell them how to build it. So, I explained that I've had the bad luck of being at several universities with new animal facilities built just before or after my arrival, and they have ALL had major flaws that are only noticed when the researchers start to get ready to use them, and I'd really like some input to the facility here to avoid those same mistakes again. Apparently, all I can do is convey that to the consultants when they visit. :cry: (When I hear about them arriving, I'm typing up a list to give to them and can only hope.) The BIGGEST flaw that I've seen over and again is in the HVAC systems. They test them under ideal conditions, with every door in the facility closed, and not under actual operating conditions, which is NOTHING like ideal conditions. Under actual operating conditions, there will be some offices that will have doors open all day long, same with some doors in corridors, plus you'll have doors opening to loading docks that have drastic fluctuations in temperatures depending on time of year and whether or not the loading bay doors are open for deliveries or closed, etc. The end result are drafts, wind tunnel effects, room doors that are supposed to stay shut that blow open unless you lock them, and air flow in the wrong direction.

I suspect hotels make the same mistakes of testing everything under ideal conditions, not under the conditions they'll actually be used, with people entering and leaving, doors open to meeting rooms, and changing conditions of going from an empty room to a full room, etc.
 
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I say we make it PF policy that all mentors must post in a suit.
 
Moonbear
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I dont know, I think for astronuc that wouldnt be fair. Well have to make him wear a tux.
 
Astronuc
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I dont know, I think for astronuc that wouldnt be fair. Well have to make him wear a tux.
:rofl: I'll be wearing a tux in August at a friend's wedding. I'll have to get a picture taken. It's a rare event. :biggrin:
 
JasonRox
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The way I look at it is like this...

Invest in a suit now so it looks really good on you now and as you get older you'll earn some respect (if you work hard and good) then the suit won't fit anymore but you won't need to wear it any longer!

Seriously though, you should always look your best when taking part in something you find important, whether it's a conference, date or a job you like.
 
f95toli
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Seriously though, you should always look your best when taking part in something you find important, whether it's a conference, date or a job you like.
I think it more important that dress appropriately. A suit is a good idea when you go to a e.g. job interview or even a date at a nice restaurant but, as I pointed out above, it would look really out of place at a physics conference. Not that shorts and a T-shirt is necessarily a good idea either, although shorts are certainly more common that suits at most conferences that are held during the summer.
 

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