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At NASW-NC Clinical Institute 2012, Chapter staff spoke to NASW-NC member Eric Tucker, MSW about his opinion on social work professionalism and appearance. This is what he had to say:
“I can only imagine the thought and work that goes into communicating the right message to social work professionals in a way that is acceptable to all. For me, the key to presenting professional dress and appearance is inherent in how we actually define “professional”. There is a sense of pride for the social work mission, commitment to the well-being of my clients and community, and stance on excellence that is reflected in presentation. Not only in our dressing dos and don’ts but also in our communication skills and ability to articulate various concerns.”
Other views of Social Work and Professional Appearance
Connecting with your client is an important part of social work and that may include dressing down to build that relationship. But what about your profession’s conferences and local or statewide meetings? How do you think professional appearance has an effect on the public’s perception of the social work profession?
Opinion: Should social workers dress up or dress down for work?
Professional Communication Skills in Social Work
Social Workers: What Not to Wear
Interviewing Guidelines: Boston University School of Social Work
Tips for Interviewing for a Field Placement: NC State University School of Social Work
“You Need to Cover Your Tattoos!”: Reconsidering Standards of Professional Appearance in Social Work
Conscious Use of Self: Tuning the Instrument of Social Work Practice and Cultural Competence