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Vet school interview attire - grey hair okay?

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Lavaniel

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Hey!

I start my VMCAS applications next summer, so I have a bit to start planning. However, I have suffered from Avoidant Personality Disorder and social anxiety, and one of the ways I have circumvented shying away from social situations is granny-grey hair, and its Sparks brand Silvermist to be exact. It makes me purposely stand out so that I can't rely on hiding away from people and has worked in helping me combat that anxiety extremely well. My question is, if I keep this color, will my chances be dramatically low for acceptance? As of right now, I would consider my application to be competitive, with a 3.9 GPA, and I am taking the GRE in a few months. I will be joining research in a few months and have about 600 small animal shadowing experience. I am from Eastern Kentucky, so opportunities for shadowing and research are extremely limited as this is a very poor region of the country. I have a desire to specialize in veterinary epidemiology and that is what my research will be focused on. I plan to apply to North Carolina State, Auburn, Cornell, and Tennessee, with NCSU as my first choice due to their MPH program for DVMs.

Is my hair worth coloring over for an interview even if it means I'm letting phobias back in?
 

SkiOtter

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Hey!

I start my VMCAS applications next summer, so I have a bit to start planning. However, I have suffered from Avoidant Personality Disorder and social anxiety, and one of the ways I have circumvented shying away from social situations is granny-grey hair, and its Sparks brand Silvermist to be exact. It makes me purposely stand out so that I can't rely on hiding away from people and has worked in helping me combat that anxiety extremely well. My question is, if I keep this color, will my chances be dramatically low for acceptance? As of right now, I would consider my application to be competitive, with a 3.9 GPA, and I am taking the GRE in a few months. I will be joining research in a few months and have about 600 small animal shadowing experience. I am from Eastern Kentucky, so opportunities for shadowing and research are extremely limited as this is a very poor region of the country. I have a desire to specialize in veterinary epidemiology and that is what my research will be focused on. I plan to apply to North Carolina State, Auburn, Cornell, and Tennessee, with NCSU as my first choice due to their MPH program for DVMs.

Is my hair worth coloring over for an interview even if it means I'm letting phobias back in?
Keep your hair. It’s what you feel comfortable in. If a school doesn’t want you because you have grey hair, their loss. People get accepted every year having bright colored hair. So no, I don’t think you should do anything different to your hair because I’ll bet it looks amazing on you.

Also iirc Cornell and NCSU don’t interview for regular admissions?
 
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MOOSEygoosey

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Hey!

I start my VMCAS applications next summer, so I have a bit to start planning. However, I have suffered from Avoidant Personality Disorder and social anxiety, and one of the ways I have circumvented shying away from social situations is granny-grey hair, and its Sparks brand Silvermist to be exact. It makes me purposely stand out so that I can't rely on hiding away from people and has worked in helping me combat that anxiety extremely well. My question is, if I keep this color, will my chances be dramatically low for acceptance? As of right now, I would consider my application to be competitive, with a 3.9 GPA, and I am taking the GRE in a few months. I will be joining research in a few months and have about 600 small animal shadowing experience. I am from Eastern Kentucky, so opportunities for shadowing and research are extremely limited as this is a very poor region of the country. I have a desire to specialize in veterinary epidemiology and that is what my research will be focused on. I plan to apply to North Carolina State, Auburn, Cornell, and Tennessee, with NCSU as my first choice due to their MPH program for DVMs.

Is my hair worth coloring over for an interview even if it means I'm letting phobias back in?
I agree with Ski! And it's also a conversation starter!!! :) I wore moonstone earrings and my interviewer LOVED THEM!
 
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SkiOtter

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I have a desire to specialize in veterinary epidemiology and that is what my research will be focused on. I plan to apply to North Carolina State, Auburn, Cornell, and Tennessee, with NCSU as my first choice due to their MPH program for DVMs
Also, adding to this list @vetmedhead is currently in the DVM/MPH program at CSU
 
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WhtsThFrequency

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Are we talking gray or more like silver? If it's a natural grayish color it's probably fine, but if it's metallic silver that's another matter.

As someone who has been through a large variety of funky colored hair...I'd personally just change it for interviews and then change it back if you get in. It's all well and good to say people should focus on your skills and not your appearance, but the fact of the matter is people will - right or wrong.

For something like shadowing etc, I think keeping it would be fine because that's a much smaller risk environment.

E.g. for my faculty interview, I change my pink hair back to blonde, wore the smallest gauges I owned, wore a watch to hide my wrist tattoo, etc. In my mind, why risk it? Yeah yeah blah blah, why would I want to work at a place that wouldn't hire me if I had pink hair.....because I'm an adult and need a paycheck, and realize that even if people are stupid and judge me for it, that's how the cookie crumbles. It sucks. But I'd rather swallow my pride so I can pursue my career than try to make a statement and be SOL (although yes, I realize in your case it is less about making a statement and more about a coping mechanism).

Could you compensate with something else unique but not quite as in-your-face, perhaps?

As someone else who also suffers from anxiety (and who also used appearances, hair, mods, etc to cope with it) I can tell you that changing how you look may help you avoid the problem, but it doesn't address it. You can't rely on it to keep you in a stable state for the rest of your life. It's a band-aid on a bigger problem - trust me. I don't say this to be mean - more to tell you hey, I've been there, I know - I sympathize. In any case, whatever you decide - best of luck.
 
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CalliopeDVM

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If it's a natural grayish color it's probably fine,
I'm sure it would be fine! There are people who turn naturally gray very early, and I can't imagine anyone would be so rude as to ask a gray-haired person in their 20s whether they were naturally prematurely gray.
 

Straw Hat Gal

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Hey!

I start my VMCAS applications next summer, so I have a bit to start planning. However, I have suffered from Avoidant Personality Disorder and social anxiety, and one of the ways I have circumvented shying away from social situations is granny-grey hair, and its Sparks brand Silvermist to be exact. It makes me purposely stand out so that I can't rely on hiding away from people and has worked in helping me combat that anxiety extremely well. My question is, if I keep this color, will my chances be dramatically low for acceptance? As of right now, I would consider my application to be competitive, with a 3.9 GPA, and I am taking the GRE in a few months. I will be joining research in a few months and have about 600 small animal shadowing experience. I am from Eastern Kentucky, so opportunities for shadowing and research are extremely limited as this is a very poor region of the country. I have a desire to specialize in veterinary epidemiology and that is what my research will be focused on. I plan to apply to North Carolina State, Auburn, Cornell, and Tennessee, with NCSU as my first choice due to their MPH program for DVMs.

Is my hair worth coloring over for an interview even if it means I'm letting phobias back in?
I think that shade of gray is a natural looking shade that would be fine. But I wonder, have you considered foregoing vet school and instead pursuing a career in epidemiology with a Master's in Public Health with a PhD?
 

Lavaniel

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I think that shade of gray is a natural looking shade that would be fine. But I wonder, have you considered foregoing vet school and instead pursuing a career in epidemiology with a Master's in Public Health with a PhD?

The program I plan on applying for is unique to people with DVMs, but that's definitely a good backup for me!
 

Lavaniel

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Are we talking gray or more like silver? If it's a natural grayish color it's probably fine, but if it's metallic silver that's another matter.

As someone who has been through a large variety of funky colored hair...I'd personally just change it for interviews and then change it back if you get in. It's all well and good to say people should focus on your skills and not your appearance, but the fact of the matter is people will - right or wrong.

For something like shadowing etc, I think keeping it would be fine because that's a much smaller risk environment.

E.g. for my faculty interview, I change my pink hair back to blonde, wore the smallest gauges I owned, wore a watch to hide my wrist tattoo, etc. In my mind, why risk it? Yeah yeah blah blah, why would I want to work at a place that wouldn't hire me if I had pink hair.....because I'm an adult and need a paycheck, and realize that even if people are stupid and judge me for it, that's how the cookie crumbles. It sucks. But I'd rather swallow my pride so I can pursue my career than try to make a statement and be SOL.

Could you compensate with something else unique but not quite as in-your-face, perhaps?

As someone else who also suffers from anxiety (and who also used appearances, hair, mods, etc to cope with it) I can tell you that changing how you look may help you avoid the problem, but it doesn't address it. You can't rely on it to keep you in a stable state for the rest of your life. It's a band-aid on a bigger problem - trust me. In any case, whatever you decide - best of luck.

Yeah I had been leaning towards just changing it for the interviews. I start therapy full-time in the fall to find more permanent solutions for APD so that should be interesting. Thanks for advice! Definitely not looking forward to super boring brown but life isn't fair I suppose.
 
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WhtsThFrequency

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Yeah I had been leaning towards just changing it for the interviews. I start therapy full-time in the fall to find more permanent solutions for APD so that should be interesting. Thanks for advice! Definitely not looking forward to super boring brown but life isn't fair I suppose.

Haha, I know, man. I do miss magenta hair. Maybe once I start in my job I can do just the tips or something - we'll see. I do think attitudes are changing, and have been for a while....but they're still changing only slowly.

The majority of people probably won't care, but there's still that cohort that will. As much as I don't like catering to the judge-y minority, sometimes you gotta just temporarily bite the bullet. I think there is always some compromise, though. E.g. I still have my plugs, I just sized down from 1/2" to between 0g and 7/16" - enough so that I can still wear interesting things, but they could still even kinda look like normal large earrings.
 
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Lavaniel

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Keep your hair. It’s what you feel comfortable in. If a school doesn’t want you because you have grey hair, their loss. People get accepted every year having bright colored hair. So no, I don’t think you should do anything different to your hair because I’ll bet it looks amazing on you.

Also iirc Cornell and NCSU don’t interview for regular admissions?

I don't think Cornell does and NCSU doesn't for sure. So it would mostly be Auburn and the others, and since they're lower on my priority list, I suppose I should stress less about it!
 
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nyanko

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I had bright pink hair when I was offered an interview to my vet school, and despite already being a Masters student there and probably a lot of the faculty doing interviews having already seen me around the vet school with bright pink hair, I dyed over it (a temporary dye, sort of a purple hue of black, so not SUPER boring, but still way more boring than the bright pink) for interviews. I had my hair bright pink for the first two years of vet school though. vOv
 

Skimble

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@Skimble did you have bright hair at your interview?
I did not, but it would not have hurt my chances of being accepted at Penn, unless I was interviewed by one specific person, and even then I'm not sure it would have had a negative effect. One of my classmates had silver hair during her interview, and well, obviously, she was accepted. I can't speak for other schools, but Penn doesn't care about your crazy hair, stretched ears, facial piercings or visible tattoos.
 

twelvetigers

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I had brown hair for interviews as well. But, I brought the pink for first year and kept it most of the way through. I still have pink/purple in my hair now, but not all of it.
 

hygebeorht

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Don't sweat it. At NC State they really couldn't care less. Students there have had every wacky hairstyle/color you can imagine. Tatted up? Who cares. Gauged out, pierced all to hell? Whatever. Act professional, polish your weird-ass hair up, no one cares. NCSU is all about diversity. You do you.
 
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