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Tips for a College Interview

Tips for a College Interview

Many of you are receiving your college acceptance letters, and with that, some of you may have to undergo an interview at the college for a variety of reasons. The following are tips from Allen Grove on what you can expect if, in fact, you have that interview.

1. Why are you interested in our college?

Make sure you have done your research and know the college’s distinctive features. Stay away from answers focusing on “I want a good education” or “I want to make money,” but instead be specific and let the interviewer know why you were drawn to the college. Maybe they have an awesome first-year program or have an emphasis on experimental learning. Feel free to mention the school’s traditions, outdoor beauty, or unique majors. Explain specifically what about the college distinguishes it from other colleges you’re thinking about.

2. What can I tell you about our college?

Without a doubt, you will have the opportunity to ask questions. So, make sure you have plenty. And, be sure they are thoughtful and specific to that particular college. Ask questions like, “How many accepted freshmen graduate in four or five years?” “What would graduates of your college say was the most valuable experience?” Have questions that stay away from what any applicant can find on the college’s website.

3. Who in your life has most influenced you?

This question can stump many possible students, so take some time thinking about and identifying real, historical, and fictional characters you admire and why you admire them. You may admire a family member, teacher, friend, coach, or community member. No matter who you choose, bring the influential person to life and try to provide colorful, entertaining, and specific examples of how this person has influenced you.

4. What will you contribute to our campus community?

Think about what makes you unique and what you can bring to diversify the college community. How do you see yourself  interacting with classmates and community members? The college already knows you are a good student so take this opportunity to show that you can think outside the box.

5. Tell us about a challenge that you overcame.

Most interviewers will ask this question to see what kind of problem solver you are and how you handle difficult situations since college will be full of them. Things to consider are an academic challenge you overcame, an athletic challenge you faced, a personal tragedy, a personal goal, or an ethical dilemma.

6. Tell us about yourself.

The interviewer wants you to convey your unique personality and passions, so take the opportunity to show him or her why you are different than all of the other applicants. Stay away from predictable answers and focus on what your passions are, what quirks do you have, why do your friends really like you, and what makes you laugh.  One word of caution, sometimes these interviews are held to assess whether or not the admissions committee thinks you will “fit in”.  So be unique, but don’t be odd!  Remember, the interviewer is interested in getting to know you so make sure you are painting that colorful portrait of you and not just a sketch.

These are only a few tips for an interview and there are many more questions you may be asked. If you need some help in preparing for these, please contact us and set up an appointment!