Tips for Acing Your College Interview
Many High School students are in their college application process and may be going on interviews. Since I have been conducting interviews for a few months, I’ve come up with some tips that can help students on their interviews. If you have an interview coming up, here are some tips to make sure you feel comfortable and leave a good impression on your interviewer. Many of these tips have been provided by some of the staff members at Lunder Undergraduate Admissions at Babson!
1. Do your research
If possible try to attend and information session or campus tour prior to your interview to get some background information on the school. If that is not possible, look on the campus websites for different clubs or activities, campus life and some of the schools featured courses! Show this by referring to the information in your answers. You can even search for “common college interview questions” to practice what questions you may be asked.
2. Know yourself
A student should always anticipate questions that will require them to think about their personality, strengths and weaknesses. If you can answer questions effectively about yourself, this shows confidence and emotional intelligence.
3. Maintain eye contact
Looking at your interviewer shows that you are engaged and alert. If you are feeling nervous, the more you look at the interviewer in the eye, the more comfortable you will feel with him or her.
4. Enunciate your words
Try to keep a steady speaking pace and enunciate as best as you can.
5. Use appropriate language
I notice this problem frequently. Even if your interviewer is a current college student (admission fellow) you should still treat the interviewer with respect. You should not use words like “dude” or swear words. This can apply to questions; if you would like to ask about campus life; you should ask “what are some popular clubs and activities on campus?” avoid asking explicitly about parties.
6. Dress appropriately
Make sure you feel comfortable in whatever you are wearing. However, also try to make sure you are at least in business casual. Avoid jeans and logo shirts.
7. Arrive on time
Arriving early is on time and arriving on time is late, that’s my motto.
9. Think before you speak
Interviewers would rather have you take a second to think of your answer than to blurt the first thought that comes into your mind. Take your time, there is no rush. However, when you are thinking of an answer, avoid using word like “ummmm”; we would rather you just take a silent pause to think.
10. Have questions for your interviewer
Having questions at the end of the interview shows preparedness and insightfulness. No matter how much you know about the school, you can always ask a question. Try asking a question that cannot be found on the school website. For example, “What is your favorite thing about Babson?”
11. Bring a résumé
If you bring a copy of your résumé, it will show that you are prepared. If you forget to mention any clubs or activities, the interviewer will have your résumé to reference when documenting your answers.
When you are asked a question, make sure to elaborate whenever possible. For example, if you are asked “what field of business might you be interested in?” Don’t just say, “Finance”. Say “Finance, because when I was in elementary school I learned about…….” The key word here is to say _____, because.
13.. Introduce yourself and your family
When you first meet your interviewer, stand up, smile and introduce yourself. If you came with family members, introduce them as well. Make sure you show that you are excited for the interview.
14. Relax, don’t be nervous it’s more of a conversation
The purpose of an interview is to get to know you and see if you are a good fit for the prospective school. Interviewers are there to make sure your voice is heard. Remember, interviewers are on your side so there is no need to be nervous. Think of it as a conversation and networking opportunity.
If you would like to ask me for anymore tips , tweet me at @leandrashar