By Alexis Galmin
Photos: Alexis Galmin, coloredgirlconfidential.com, zap2it.com, jetmag.com
As Huskies, I’m sure many of you have already gone on co-op or are planning to go on co-op. Going on co-op can be such an enlightening experience – possibly even with the opportunity to travel for business. Here are a few tips from Sam Smith and me.
Smith had the chance to go on a five-day business trip to Chicago for training during her co-op last semester with McGladrey, an accounting firm based in Boston.
The Golden Rule
Pack light and keep it simple. You don’t need your volumizing spray, hair spray, leave-in conditioner, Moroccan oil and hair dryer (“because the hotel one is too basic”). Let’s be honest, you probably don’t use those products regularly and you think that you’ll be overachieving if you do… DON’T. Bring a few lightweight statement pieces like dainty necklaces and a bracelet or watch.
What to pack?
Olivia Pope, the star of ABC’s Scandal, knows how to pack for a few days of business – “Get me one grey suit, one blue suit, one black suit, six blouses, three pairs of shoes, some underwear and my toothbrush.” Now, most of us don’t have the glamorous closet of Olivia Pope nor do we have Lyn Paolo creating our looks, but the same concept can be used in the world of college budgets and co-op.
I asked Smith what she would pack for a four-day business trip and her response was very close to the demands of Kerry Washington’s Pope – “I’d pack black and grey slacks, a black skirt, six blouses, three pairs of shoes, a few necklaces, a blazer, a sweater and a scarf… or two.”
The extra blouses are there as emergency post-coffee disaster alternatives. Shoes should be black or easily mixable with other items. Flats are recommended – boots if it’s cold – and a low heel for a more formal outing. Don’t forget to pack a little black dress if a semi-formal dinner meeting is on the schedule.
Avoid bringing too many beauty products. A polished French braid or a sock bun looks great and doesn’t require heat styling tools. If you must bring a flat iron, bring your smallest one. It can soon double as a curling iron with a little practice.
In the age of Pinterest, many of us are on the search for life hacks to apply to our everyday lives, but what about life hacks for business trips? Ready?
Hang your clothes in the bathroom as you shower to steam out the wrinkles. Pack your necklaces using straws to keep them from tangling. Use travel size bottles for toiletries and don’t forget about the 1-quart/3 oz. liquid rule when flying – carry on is recommended.
Last but not least, always maximize the use of your purse or laptop bag!