Professional Attire

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The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Nursing believes that professionalism begins with appearance and attire. The SON Uniform Policy is formulated to ensure high standards of dress and appearance that represent our university to area hospitals and community settings. The values of asepsis, client safety, and client sensitivity are also incorporated into the policy. Faculty reserve the right to ask a student to leave the clinical area if appearance is not in keeping with the SON Uniform Policy.


1. The official uniform for the School of Nursing may be purchased at UNC-Chapel Hill Student Stores:
  • Pewter gray scrub pants
  • Pewter gray scrub top with UNC SON logo*
  • Ceil blue scrub jacket with UNC SON logo* or
  • White lab coat with UNC SON logo*
    Please note: When ordering from UNC-Chapel Hill Student Stores, lab coats are not pre-embroidered. Please allow 2-3 weeks for lab coat embroidery. Nursing students should purchase a long lab coat. The logo should be on the left side. The student’s name should not be added.
  • White polo shirt with UNC SON logo (optional)*
  • White or black leather (or comparable material) professional shoes and white or black socks will be worn with the uniform. No open back/open toe clogs. Shoes should be clean and in good repair.
  • Nametags. All undergraduate students must purchase two (2) nametags (standard size is approximately 1″ x 3″). Nametags should have black lettering on a white background and include the following information:
2. Nametags. Students must wear a nametag as identification in clinical/research settings. Nametags may be purchased at most uniform or trophy/plaque stores (e.g., Signs Now/Occasions Engraving at Eastgate Shopping Center in Chapel Hill). Name tags and any agency specific ID badges must be visible at all times.
3. Clinical Settings. The uniform must be worn on days in which you are in the clinical area unless faculty specifies otherwise. The uniform regulations stated above apply to many clinical settings. However, clinical practice dress codes may vary among clinical facilities/sites. Students are expected to adhere to any requirements specific to a particular clinical site. Uniforms are only to be worn in clinical areas, simulation labs or designated community events, such as health fairs.
4. Professional Attire. For certain clinical areas, or for picking up patient assignment information, attending classes in the clinical setting (e-charting, CPR etc), or attending special sessions such as orientation in preparation for the clinical assignment, students are required to wear business attire.
  • Scrub jacket or lab coat is required.
  • UNC SON nametag is required.
  • Pants or slacks to the ankle/shoe.
  • Dresses and or skirts must be covering the abdomen and to the knee.
The following are not permitted:
  • Jeans
  • Shorts
  • Halters
  • Sleeveless shirts or camisoles worn alone
  • Items with logos other than the UNC SON
  • Flip-flops, slippers or excessively high-heeled shoes
5. Accessories
  • Jewelry restricted to one wedding ring and no more than one pair of small earrings in the ear lobe. No large or dangling earrings should be worn in the clinical area or lab settings.
  • Necklaces should not be visible.
  • One watch with second hand is required.
  • No other visible body jewelry.
  • No tattoos should be visible.
  • Avoid all heavily scented products, e.g. soaps, perfumes, after shaves, deodorants, hair grooming items, laundry products, etc.
6. Hair and Nails
  • Hair is to be worn off the face, and should be neat as well as comfortable. If your hair is longer than shoulder length, it should be tied back.
  • Nails should be clean and neatly trimmed. Only clear nail polish is permitted.
  • Artificial nails are not permitted in the clinical setting.
  • Male students should be clean shaven or have neatly trimmed beards or moustache.
7. Other
  • A white or light blue colored shirt may be worn under the uniform.
  • In addition to the requirements listed above, students must comply with any dress code policies for nurses set by the clinical agency in which students are participating in a clinical experience.
  • Gum chewing is not permitted. It detracts from your professional demeanor.
  • Cleanliness is an essential part of providing professional care to clients. Attention to personal hygiene and a clean, unwrinkled appearance are required.It is the right of patients to be cared for by staff who maintain high standards of personal hygiene and a related right of colleagues to expect a non-offensive and hypo-allergenic work environment. Students should report at the beginning of each clinical shift with, and maintain throughout their shift, clean clothing, being free of body odor or excessive perfume, cologne, after shave, fragrance or tobacco odor, and with a clean face, hands and fingernails. Visible tattoos and body piercings other than earrings are strongly discouraged and may be deemed inappropriate.

Revised-March 2011; Implementation: Spring 2011, revised February 2012


1. Uniforms. All graduate students in the clinical arena for the academic purposes of fulfilling clinical precepting assignments or conducting research must be identified as a SchoolofNursingstudent by displaying a proper nametag. During these activities, students are considered individual representatives of the School; therefore the students’ dress and behavior should reflect that professional level of responsibility.

TheSchoolofNursingnametag will be attached to the left front (shoulder). The clinical preceptor or policies of the clinical agency in which the academic activity is being conducted shall designate specific attire.

2. Nametags. Graduate students engaged in clinical practice or research activities must purchase two nametags (standard size is approximately 1″ x 3″). Nametags should have black lettering on a white background and include the following information:


Students must wear a nametag as identification in all clinical/research settings. Nametags may be purchased at most uniform or trophy/plaque stores (e.g., Signs Now/Occasions Engraving atEastgateShopping CenterinChapel Hill).

Revised-Dec 2008