3 Reasons To Do A College Interview

Flickr user City Year

Some schools offer applicants the chance to take a college interview. These sessions are often with a faculty member or professor in your intended field, but it can also be an alumnus of the school. If you’re on the fence about the interview though, here are three reasons why you should schedule on.

Sometimes It’s Mandatory

Many colleges require the college interview for either acceptance into the school, evaluation for specific programs, or placement. Schools where the interview is mandatory include Harvard University, University of Pennsylvania, and Georgetown University. When applying, always check if your potential future school asks for an interview. These colleges and universities that require the interview will use the information gleaned from your answers towards your overall application or acceptance into a program.

Students generally have the option to go to the interview in person, talk over the phone, or conference over the internet. If an interview is not at all possible for you, explain that to the school. Even when mandatory, they will sometimes allow you to skip this process.

Looks Good To Your School

Even if the college interview isn’t mandatory at your potential schools, if they offer one, it is always recommended that you attend. Some colleges even list their interviews as specifically “recommended,” not mandatory. If your potential colleges say that, absolutely schedule one as not participating could hurt your acceptance chances.

Other schools have interviews that are completely optional. Still, however, you have that chance to put your best foot forward and show the college or university you are motivated to attend there. It may give your application the boost it needs.

Allows You To Build On Your Application

You can’t say everything about yourself in your college application and essay, but an interview gives you the chance to say a bit more. You’ll be asked specific questions about your education, volunteer work, extracurriculars, or other experiences. When you’re prepared, you can take this opportunity to build on your strengths.

These interviews also give you the chance to fully express your interest in attending the school. Many interviewers will ask why you want to attend, so you can go into details. However, remember to be yourself. The interviewer wants to hear what you have to say, not what you think they want to hear.

If a college interview is mandatory, you should absolutely make every effort to attend. Even if your school doesn’t require the interview, it could be recommended. Recommended or optional, it’s always a good idea to schedule that appointment, especially if it’s a school you have your heart set on attending.

When applying to a college or university, always check their application requirements. It will explain their interview process there so you can ensure you’re not missing a vital aspect of applying. You can schedule your appointment and prepare for your interview. Do research on your particular school to find out what questions they may ask during the session. Whether mandatory or optional, online or in person, it’s always a good idea to take part in the college interview if you’re given the opportunity.

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Hilary Cairns

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