The Career Center was forced to reschedule their professional mock interviews last week due to the unexpected snow days.
The ACU Career Center offers students mock interviews with professionals from the Abilene community at the beginning of every semester. Jill Fortson, president of the Big Country Society of Human Resource Management, organized the event.
“It’s a really good way for us to partner with the community and that’s why I’ve reached out to the professionals,” Fortson said.
Caley Johnson, a senior accounting major from Omaha, Neb., participated in the interview process last year.
“The interview was professional,” Johnson said. “It was conducted by a local HR manager at Hendrick, so I got asked real questions she used in interviews.”
The recruiters brought in are informed ahead of time of what industry the students are studying, said Fortson. This allows them to gear their questions towards that specific industry, creating a more authentic interviewing experience.
“I felt much more prepared. I think getting to do a practice round of interviewing gave me confidence and a sense of ease when I interviewed for real later,” Johnson said.
Students are given a 30-minute time slot in which the professionals ask them questions. After the interview is conducted, students receive feedback from the interviewer on their attire, strengths and weaknesses, eye contact, first impression and how to improve.
“She asked a few questions I hadn’t considered before which helped me think of myself in different ways,” Johnson said. “She gave me feedback on strengths and weaknesses she noticed so I could keep up the strengths and improve on the weaknesses when I interviewed for real.”
Daniel Weido, a senior biology pre-med major from Spring, has also been through the process and said his experience gave him confidence in his real job interview because of the feedback he received.
“I was more confident going into the real thing because I knew what to expect and how to respond to certain questions,” Weido said. “These tips and the process helped me have a successful interview and get the job.”
Some students who have gone through the process have not only gained interview experience, but have also been offered an actual job.
It’s great practice, but also a good way to network with human resource professionals in the area, Fortson said.
“By doing the mock interview with a potential employer, you may get an opportunity as well,” she said.
While the Career Center offers mock interviews year-round, the interviews with professionals in the community are only offered at one time during the semester. However, due to the snow days, students have had their interviews postponed.
These professional interviews have been moved to Feb. 21 for students who were signed up to participate in the event.
The original event was completely booked, but now the Career Center has opened up more time slots Feb. 21 for those on the waiting list and any others who are interested in signing up.
Fortson encourages students to take advantage of this opportunity.
“It’s a simple way to get experience,” she said.