Last year, I really started to promote the idea of using Homecoming season as the official kick off for the campus job interview season. I know my HBCU students are well versed in campus Homecoming activities. Why wouldn’t they be? Most campuses are talking Homecoming the minute the fall semester begins.
My challenge to HBCU students is this for the fall – Sign up for at least one campus job interview for every Homecoming event you attend. Here is how to prepare.
1. Stop by the college career center for resume help including sample resumes or resume critiques.
2. Find out which companies are coming to campus and visit the company website. Recruiters are more impressed with job seekers who do company research.
3. Practice answering job interview questions to demonstrate your skills.
4. Prepare your job interview attire a day or so before the interview so that you can avoid wardrobe malfunctions.
5. Arrive early for the job interview and bring pen, paper and a clean, up-to-date copy of your resume. Don’t think that because it’s a campus job interview that the recruiter doesn’t expect professional behavior.
6. Be polite with every recruiter visiting your school for the fall campus job interview season. Companies spend money to come to campus and make deliberate choices about which schools to target. How you interact with these on campus recruiters will help create a positive brand for your school.
7. Speak clearly and answer all the questions. You can say you do not know, instead of mumbling.
8. Prepare a list of questions you want to ask the recruiter in the campus job interview.
9. Make sure you show up for your scheduled campus job interview. I can tell you that most career centers will restrict your campus interview rights if you are scheduled to interview and don’t show up.
Do not be disappointed if you do not ace your first campus job interview. Keep practising. Keep in mind that practise will improve your job interview performance and so check if your career center offers mock interviews.