Interview Tips from PennWest’s Career Readiness Series

Alycia Baker from Enterprise Holdings provided PennWest students with interview tips at the recent Career Readiness Series virtual event.


Career Center

Nailing the Interview

Makayla McNett, Staff Writer

The PennWest Center for Career and Professional Development hosted their Career Readiness series last week. 

Alumni and employers shared their tips and tricks for resumes, interviewing, understanding salary/benefit packages, and avoiding the pitfalls of an internship or job search. On Thursday, Feb. 23, the “New Interview Trends” session was held. Alycia Baker, Group Talent Acquisition Manager at Enterprise Holdings, presented interview tips for students. 

Nailing the job interview was the first focus of the presentation, and there were a few tips to help ensure this. Alycia suggested preparing a 30 second pitch, in which you form an introduction and highlight your interests, experiences, and strengths. 

The ‘STAR’ method is an interview technique that gives a straightforward format that can be used to tell a story by clearly expressing the Situation, Task, Action, and Result.

  • Situation: Set the scene of your story, and give the necessary details. 
  • Task: Explain what your role of responsibility was in the situation. 
  • Action: Explain the steps that were taken to address the situation. 
  • Result: Share the outcomes of your actions. 

The presentation given by Alycia also covered ‘The Do’s and Dont’s of the Interviews,’ including in person, virtual, or pre-recorded. 

The Do’s: 

  • Practice!
  • Arrive or Log in Early
  • Bring multiple copies of your resume, and have it posted in front of you
  • Make good eye contact
  • Remember to smile!
  • Accentuate the positive
  • Stick to professional examples
  • Choose a quiet place with good internet

The Don’ts:

  • Arrive right on time or late
  • Talk too much
  • Chew gum
  • Use inappropriate language 
  • Bring a cellphone into the interview 
  • Look at your watch
  • Assume that anyone you meet is unimportant

After the interview, Alycia suggested being prepared with questions. Ask the interviewer about the next step in the interview process, and send a follow up email. 

If student’s have any questions or would like to schedule a mock interview for practice, they were encouraged to make an appointment with a Career Coach at the Center for Career and Professional Development.