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HSOG Dress Code

Policy Information

Issuing Office

Helms School of Government

Affected Parties

All students taking residential HSOG courses (CJUS and GOVT designations)

Policy Language

Pursuant to the authorization granted by the Liberty Way, the Helms School of Government will require its faculty and students to maintain a neat, well-groomed, and professional appearance while attending all 300- and 400-level classes that convene before 5:00 p.m., including weekend classes/seminars.

In addition, any university or club function held in the Helms School of Government suite, regardless of time of day, will require adherence to the Helms School Dress Code; hats, caps, shorts are not acceptable inside any classroom or the Helms School suite.

Policy Rationale

The Helms School of Government seeks to educate and train the next generation of leaders in some of the most high-profile positions in society. Therefore,students must be purposeful in the development of a professionally acceptable wardrobe, and hold themselves to a standard that transcends cultural and campus norms.

Definition of Glossary Terms

Suits (Women): Dress suits with a skirt or dress suits with slacks. Suits should be tailored and professional in cut, style, and color.

Dresses (Women): Tailored, professional, conservative dresses are acceptable.

Skirts/Slacks (Women): Skirts and slacks should be tailored, and professional in cut, style, and color. Skirts must be at or just above the knees with conservative slits. Midriffs may not be exposed.

Blouses/Shirts (Women): Blouses should be modest and complement the suit, skirt, or slacks. If there is a question as to the modesty of a blouse or shirt, err on the side of conservatism. Midriffs may not be exposed. Cardigans, sweaters, sweater sets, and blazers are also acceptable.

Dress Shoes (Women): Shoes should be polished and in good condition.

Military Service Uniforms: Military service uniforms, worn in compliance with DoD standards, are always appropriate and welcome in the Helms School.

Dress Slacks (Men): Dress slacks are preferred, professional colors are black, navy, blue, brown, khaki, and gray. Dress khakis are acceptable, but no cargo-style pants should be worn. All pants shall be worn with a belt at the waistline.

Suits, Sport Coats (Men): Suits should be a tailored and professional in cut, style, and color Subtle stripes, tweeds, and solids are acceptable.

Shirts (Men): Shirts should be long-sleeved, dress, or button-down oxford shirts, in professional colors. Polo shirts are permitted, but not encouraged. All shirts shall be worn tucked in.

Ties (Men): Optional, but strongly encouraged, with dress shirts.

Socks/Belt (Men): Socks and belt color should coordinate with suit/slacks and shoes.

Procedural Information


All apparel should be neat, clean, and without material flaws such as holes and frayed edges.

University established “spirit day” dress for students is permitted.

If others can see your undergarments, it is by definition not modest and not professional

The Helms School dress code integrates all dress code prohibitions set forth in the Liberty Way, and includes the following prohibitions:

  • T-shirts; frayed or faded collared shirts; spaghetti straps; halter-tops; sweatshirts.
  • Stretch pants; pants that are frayed, have holes, or are faded.
  • Denim (pants or shirts).
  • Birkenstock-type or thong-style sandals, flip-flops, athletic or hiking shoes.
  • Hats or caps.
  • The exhibition of “non-traditional” jewelry (i.e., wearing of earrings by male students,
  • facial piercings by any student) is unacceptable.
  • Tattoos will be covered.
  • Facial hair should be neat and closely trimmed.
  • Hairstyles will be in an appropriate fashion for a professional look.


Any student found in violation of this University approved dress code may be reported to the Student Conduct Office. Additionally, the student may be asked to leave the class, exam or function and considered absent, as appropriate.


University established “spirit day” dress for students is permitted.

Initial Approval Date


Date of Last Review


Date for Review