Advice on Interviewing

(This article by Sharon Roy originally appeared in The Royal Purple.)

Now that we are on the home stretch to graduation, and you are overwhelmed with group projects, here is some good news… Interviewing should be EASY!

Interviewing is a predictable and repeatable process that you can control to highlight your core competencies. It can be FUN too!

OK, first you have to find out if this is a company you want to work for. Do your research online. Ask questions that you have previously written down about corporate culture—what employees at this company like most and least about their jobs. Ask these questions early in the interview process.

Then, make yourself memorable:

  1. Be courteous – make eye contact, thank the interviewer for their time during the interview and after via a hand written thank you note.
  2. Illustrate a strong work ethic – whatever the position, if you have had passion and retention in your jobs prior to graduation, talk about that.  Also, talk about how much of your education you have paid for.
  3. Be aware of current global events and highlight any travel abroad experience that you have. Global awareness will put you in the minority in terms of understanding the world outside our university walls.
  4. Talk about your internship – although internships are not required in many majors, they are one of the first things you will be asked about.

If you do an internship with your uncle or friend, they are often looked upon as “pseudo internships.”

Do an internship through the university with a faculty advisor that will assess your work with intern-specific assignments.

One of the biggest benefits is the formal evaluation your supervisor will provide you that you will always have as a testament to the problem solving and value you provided to them.

Remember, you are interviewing to provide benefits to your employer, so have two additional examples of coursework that illustrate your problem solving ability.

So, make some notes, bring them to your interview, listen, be engaged and passionate and ask about next steps.

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