Ace the Interview to Land that Job or Internship!

Geeta Chandaluri, student, University of Delaware  |  October 7, 2022 in Pearson Students

A screengrab of a virtual networking event held on Zoom.

Searching for an internship or a job as a college student can certainly be very stressful. There are many moving parts from building a perfect resume, marketing yourself, meeting the right people, and sometimes being lucky enough. While considering all factors that are supposed to go right to land a position, it is hard to stay mentally sane. Do not feel alienated if you feel pressure, it is common to get stressed when starting your career.

I am a college senior, and I have been down the “applying to a job” road several times before. One thing that all jobs have in common is interviewing. Interviewing is one of the important steps to landing a job. So here are some tips on how to stay poised while applying and interviewing!

1. Identify What You Want

There are an astonishing number of jobs out there; meaning that there are many paths for you to choose. When applying you need to list out your goals and intentions. Do you want something to make some money? Do you want an educational experience that relates to the industry that you are interested in? Do you want to meet new people and network? There are no right or wrong answers, all you need to do is sit down and brainstorm a list of your priorities.

2. “The Perfect” Resume

Many people may apply for the same opening you did, especially if it is a huge corporation. To make the hiring process manageable, many firms tend to process resumes through a “software”. This is not a reason to be intimidated; all you need to do is make sure you use keywords in your resume that demonstrate both hard and soft skills. And the last thing you want is for your resume to be thrown out because of spelling errors, so make sure your grammar and formatting are a hundred percent accurate. Run your resume by a friend or a family member to make sure it is the perfect version of your resume.

3. Research The Role

After you submit your resume, you may get a call for an interview. This is an achievement itself, but now the real work begins. Make sure you research your firm and the role. This helps you better formulate your answers and tie them back to why you are interested in the role to begin with. It shows the employer that you are interested in the job because you spent time learning about it.

4. Prep

Interview prepping can be difficult as it is impossible to know what questions you will be asked. However, good preparation is simply knowing yourself. Think about all the times when you had to be a leader or made an impact, take these stories, and convert them into potential answers that demonstrate various desirable skills. Interviewing is all about marketing yourself; the better you tell your story, the more memorable you will be.

5. Stay Poised

In addition to preparing for the interview make sure you eat well and get a good night's rest. It is important to take care of yourself physically and mentally because it reduces stress and nervousness.

Interviewing for a job or internship is daunting, but with enough preparation, you will be able to speak eloquently in front of your future employer. When you are familiar with what stories you want to tell and ideas you want to express, the interview will start to feel more like a conversation.

Want to read more on this topic from other students? Check out these blogs on finding and securing an internship, making the most of your internship experience, and more advice on interview prep.

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