Tip of the Month: Interviews

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Interviews can seem daunting but they don’t have to be. At the end of the day, it’s just another conversation. You may already know that the best conversations are often the product of a person’s willingness to share and to ask questions. So if you want to share and ask questions, an interview is a great way to do just that.

For students, interviews are an opportunity to communicate aspects of who you are as a person that may or not make it onto your application. Interviews are also an opportunity to make more of a connection with the college. At HMC, interviews very rarely “make” or “break” as student’s application. So relax and be ready to talk.

Here are some tips about interviews:

  • Policies. Different colleges have contrasting policies about interviews, so it is worthwhile to research those policies about when to interview, whether the student takes initiative or the college does, and who to interview with. At HMC, we want you to interview before the application deadline passes and we ask you to take the initiative to request one.
  • Prepare. Look up information on the college and prepare some questions that go beyond the basics. This enhances the interview for both parties and tells us that you take the process and the college seriously. Also figure out what you think about your academics, your activities, your school, your hopes for the future, and why this college might appeal to you. Be ready to articulate these points.
  • First impressions. Attempt to be a few minutes early, and dress appropriately, but comfortably. We want you to shine, so dress in a way that won’t make you self-conscious but also gives a good impression.
  • Be personable. We actually want you to succeed in the interview. It is common to be nervous, but do try to maintain eye contact, to avoid nervous habits, to sit straight, and engage us. It turns out we are human too!
  • Final tip. Some students send a quick email or note to the interviewer. This is not necessary, so do it if it makes sense to you. If there was anything left out of the interview (expanding on a point of discussion or bringing up a subject that was overlooked), this is a great way to cover that.

Lastly, look out for an upcoming post introducing our senior interns for the year.  If you’ll be interviewing on our campus, you will likely interview with one of them.