Wearing the Uniform

Auxiliary Services provides services and products needed for everyday life by the Corps of Cadets. These services include meals and snacks, uniforms and accessories, weapons, textbooks and sundry items, tailoring and cleaning of uniforms, haircuts, and mail distribution.

Uniform FAQs

Can I purchase black leather shoes and combat boots from somewhere other than VMI before matriculation?

New cadets will receive information regarding the purchase and fitting of boots in the spring/summer prior to matriculation via the New Cadet Handbook and the Matriculation Website.

Cadets are issued one pair of black leather shoes upon matriculation, or during the Summer Transition Program prior to matriculation. Cadets will be issued a second pair of black leather shoes later in the first semester when they are fitted for winter uniforms.

Can cadets get extra uniform items?

No. VMI issues cadets all the items they need. VMI has accounted for laundry cycles, typical wear and tear, and storage constraints in barracks rooms. If a cadet loses uniform items or changes weight and the uniform item no longer fits, we will refit and reissue uniform items on an as-needed basis.

Can I buy uniform pieces or cadet issue items for personal use?

No. VMI does not sell uniform items for individual use or gifts, however, the VMI Museum has a selection of uniform items for sale in the gift shop.

What are boot socks?

Boot socks are any over the calf length, thick cotton socks to wear with boots. They are usually thicker than athletic or dress socks and may be purchased at any retail store that sells socks and underwear or online. We recommend the cadets wear black boot socks.

What if a uniform does not fit properly?

VMI measures and fits cadets at matriculation with an experienced team. During the course of the Rat Line and their cadetship, cadets may change in size. Cadets are encouraged to be re-fitted for uniforms when their uniforms do not fit properly. VMI also periodically inspects uniforms for fit during the year.

Uniform Tips

Pick up replacement items by their expiration date ( usually one week after issuance). If items are not picked up by their expiration date, a "failure to comply" bone will be issued to the owner. Most garments will be turned in at graduation. Cadets will be billed for any missing garments that are required to be turned in at graduation.

Uniforms should not be shared or loaned among other cadets. When cadets loan uniforms to other cadets they risk not having uniforms when they need them.

Uniforms that do not fit should be exchanged as soon as possible. There may be restrictions on alterations of blouses and coatees until all new cadet uniforms are ready, but pants and shirts may be exchanged as soon as fit problems are discovered. There is a longer wait time at the beginning of the year so allow enough time for fittings.


A VMI ID is required to pick up laundry bags and uniforms. Coatee, blouse, overcoat and duty jackets must be delivered to the appropriate bin in the breezeway outside of Uniform Pick-Up room. Wool pants may also be placed in these bins.

Tie laundry bags properly, if they are not tied properly they may open on the laundry trucks and your items may be separated from the bag. Lost items may be retrieved in the laundry's Lost and Found on the second floor of Richardson Hall (one floor below the pick-up rooms).

Bags not thrown out on the laundry truck may be delivered to the 100 level of Richardson Hall by 2:30 p.m. Tuesday. Bags thrown out later will be processed the following week.

ACU's and travel suits may be included in your laundry bag. Make sure all ACU's have a laundry number in them. ROTC ACU's should have a laundry number in the tag before throwing out. Remove all name tags, belts and patches from ACU's before throwing out.

Uniforms are behind and under laundry numbers in bins. Bag Bins 1501 - 1800 are on the 200 level of Richardson Hall.

Lost and found laundry items are delivered to the laundry office. Contact either Beth McGrath or a laundry supervisor with questions Monday through Friday 6:00 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. There is a "Lost and Found" area in the bag room on the 300 level.

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