The Look

Style Profile with Matt Coupe

The Millennial Professional Group's board treasurer challenges the idea that Millennials are lazy by looking sharp.

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Tell us about your outfit.
It’s a blend of Express, J. Crew and Banana Republic, although locally I’m a huge fan of Marc Allen and Copa Menswear. I had purchased the red shirt initially for a holiday party but have actually gotten a lot of use out of it. I think the color really stands out, and that’s the idea behind a lot of what I wear. I also like to incorporate a lot of metallic pieces into my outfits, especially silver.

How often do you wear ties?
I tend to wear a tie most days when I’m at the office. The professionals who participate in LRI are impressive individuals, and you only get one chance to make a good first impression. My goal is to always challenge the notion that Millennials are lazy or self-entitled, and I think dressing professionally for work is a simple way to refute that stereotype.

Tell us about #ChooseRI.
#ChooseRI is a really interesting component of Millennial Professional Group of Rhode Island’s mission. I love that it’s a really simple concept to grasp (“Okay I get it, they want me to choose Rhode Island”), while yet underscoring a very complex issue. Why are young professionals not choosing Rhode Island as their ideal location to live and work? In a state with so many fantastic colleges and universities and students, why do most graduates leave the state? #ChooseRI is really about raising awareness of the opportunities available in our state. I vividly remember several of my friends from Johnson & Wales telling me after graduation, “I would’ve loved to have stayed in Rhode Island, but there were no opportunities there for me.” Yet at the same time we have top companies reporting that they can’t recruit young talent to work at their firms. #ChooseRI is about spreading the word that there are opportunities available, and changing that “anywhere but here” attitude that’s so pervasive in RI.

What are some misconceptions about Millennials?
That we’re self-entitled, or expect to be handed out stuff without actually having to work. The bigger issue is that a college degree is no longer as valuable as it once was, while at the same time being more expensive than ever to obtain. Millennials are graduating with unprecedented amounts of debt and living expenses, yet wages are flat. I have never heard a single one of my peers express frustration at having to work their way up within a company, but we do want a fair shot at a livable wage.

Any resolutions for the New Year?

Ha! If you print these I guess it means I’ll have to keep them. Definitely to hit the gym more often. I’d also like to volunteer more in the New Year.