By Heather DeRosa, Class of 2014
Landing your dream job, or any job in this economy, is a daunting task. After four-plus years of homework, studying, exams, student employment and fostering relationships with mentors, college eventually comes to an end. But with the end comes a new beginning – a career that matches up with your four years of hard work. Hopefully this career isn’t just a job to help pay off those hefty student loans, but one that is fulfilling and makes those late nights and early mornings spent studying worth it.
This is where Career Services comes into play. Career Services’ latest event, called Get Hired!, was designed to bring in several professionals to share their years of interviewing experiences with eager almost-grads to give them the tools needed to excel at the lifelong skill of interviewing for the job of their dreams.
Career Services brought in Doug Rice, the talent acquisition manager for Enterprise Holdings. Doug shared obvious tips for acing interviews, like arriving early and sending thank-you notes or emails after the interview. Doug also shared that interviewers are no longer asking questions like “What are your strengths and weaknesses?” but instead “Could you give me an example of a time that you provided excellent customer services?” This new style of interviewing, according to Rice, is called a behavioral interview. To best combat this new method, Rice gave the acronym of STAR: What was the situation you were in? What was the task you were given? What were the actions you took? And lastly, what were the results of the situation? This last one keeps you from rambling on, and ensures answers are concise and to the point.
After Rice shared his tricks of the trade (he’s conducted about 2,000 interviews) students had the opportunity to test out what Doug had taught them in a mock interview scenario. Career Services brought in Todd Williams from Country Financial, Peggy Kilburg from George Fox’s own HR Department, Jim Steele from the School of Business and Christine Thoriessen from the GFU Parent Council. Career Services also had their own staff on hand to assist in the mock interviews.
In addition to the mock interview portion, students also had the opportunity to have a small group Q&A time with Doug and pick his brain about how to interview well.
For more information on how Career Services can help you out with career counseling, internship information, and even the steps needed to apply to grad school, check out their website. And don’t forget, alumni, career services offers similar services to you, too.