Job hunting takes more than a smile

By Mark Rivera

As students gear up for fall internships and employment opportunities, the best way to get ready for work is to learn how to work an interview. The Career Center, 715 S. Wright St., offers a mock interview program to students for that very reason.

The program is set up to replicate precisely what a student could expect to see at a job interview, said Joshua Dahms, coordinator for the Career Service center.

Each mock interview is an hour-long, one-on-one experience and must be scheduled in person at least 48 hours in advance. The first 20 to 30 minutes are dedicated to asking questions a student might expect to hear at professional interviews. The other 30 are used to give the student feedback on how well they answered questions.

Shaistah Bahrainwala, sophomore in Business, said that most of the questions are behavioral, or are meant to gauge your reaction to different situations.

She also noted that the entire interview is recorded and then given to the participating student on a DVD.

“No two interviews are ever going to be the same,” and practice makes perfect, Dahms said.

He recommended using the Situation Task Action Result, or STAR, model to answer difficult questions. Provide specifics, describe the task, explain what you did, and expand on what happened – the results.

“Students seem to be very upbeat about it,” Dahms said.