Post Grad

Job Interview Tips from One College Student to Another

I am in no way a professional interviewer but I have gone through a number of them with success! I have worked four internships and part-time jobs during my time in college. Interviewing can be so hard! It’s very challenging to try and get the employers to understand who you are and your work ethic with a 30-minute video call. Here are some tips that I learned along the way:

  1. Ask Questions

This one should be obvious but just in case you didn’t know – asking questions is one of the most important parts of the job interview. This is for a few reasons, first, you are interviewing the employer just as much as the employer is interviewing you. Last semester, I interviewed for a company and asked them the question “How would you measure my success in this role?” The answer they gave me showed me that I did not want to work there. They basically said, “We measure success by the percentage margin of mistakes you make.” I would rather work for a company that measures me by my successes rather than by my mistakes. 

Secondly, asking the right questions can show the interviewer how interested you are in the position. If you ask questions that mention the specifics of the company the interviewer can see how much research you have done to set yourself out from the other applicants

  1. Practice Talking Before the Interviewer

One bright side of the pandemic is how interviews are now mainly virtual. I always practice getting my words to sound smart and now I can write them on post-it notes to hang behind my computer. For example one of the hardest questions is “why should we hire you?” I wrote out this answer – and others – and keep it on a split-screen with the interview. Here is an example of how I wrote the answer out for this question:

That’s a great question and I’m glad you asked! Before I even applied for this position I closely evaluated the job description, specifically the requirements and qualifications, the skills and abilities, and the education you were seeking. I have experience in every part of the description, specifically, Copywriting and Social media, and editorial calendar account management. I also looked at the services performed by your marketing and PR department on your website, the visual branding, press release writing, and outreach of all kinds like influencer and social media. It all aligns with my passions!

  1. Say Thank You!

Sending a Thank You note is very important. I always make sure to send one before the end of the business day that I interviewed on. The format that I have learned works best is first you thank them for taking the time to meet with you, next you give a few sentences to reiterate how you are the best fit for the company, next add a personal touch, then close it out with a professional closing. Here is one I sent earlier this week:

Hello Bob,

Thank you for taking the time to meet with me and talk about the position of the Public Relations Position. Our conversation made me even more excited to join **********. What interested me particularly was how you use word, sound, and visuals in the content you create for your clients! I can tell you value all of your employees.

​Before our interview started, I knew that ********** would be an amazing place to further my career post graduating college, after our conversation my thoughts were cemented. I am confident my skills and past experience will allow me to come in and succeed in this role, and it’s a position I would be thrilled to take on. 

By the way, Buffalo Wild Wings came out with a new Bacon Smashed Hatch Chile Burger earlier this week. You should give it a try!

I’m looking forward to hearing from you about the next steps, and please don’t hesitate to contact me if you need any additional information in the meantime.

Best Regards,

Savannah Bertram

You can see in this email the beginning where I brought up aspects from our interview. In the next paragraph I marketed myself, and then I added a personal touch – he saw on my resume that I currently work at Buffalo Wild Wings and told me the best burger he ever ate was from there. Then I professionally closed it out.

I know we’re all going through the scary process of applying for jobs amidst a financial crisis and pandemic, hopefully, the practices that work for me can help you!


  • Brooke Bescup

    Hi Savannah,

    I really like this post! I think of all this information you provided about interviews is very useful. I also always prepare what I’m going to say before my interviews and I think it is an important thing to do to be prepared and answer thoughtfully. I never thought about sending a “Thank You” email after my interview so I’m definitely going to start using that strategy. Thanks for the great post!

  • Madison Sabel

    Having an audience of college students, this was the perfect blog to share. Job interviews can be scary, but practicing a conversation OUT LOUD is so important! This has helped me be prepared in interviews.

  • Lissie Eichel

    Hi Savannah! I really like this blog, I have always stuggled with sounding confident in interviews but this really gives me some great tips for next time! I have always been told to send “thank you” emails but I never know how to write them without sounding boring. You gave such great examples espeically for asking questions and how to answer. I literally am going to use these in my next interview so thank you (:

    Have a good week!!

  • Adeline Edwards

    Hi Savannah! I really enjoyed this week’s post. I am currently searching for jobs and preparing for interviews and so this was really interesting to read. I especially liked your follow-up email! I think that you did a great job of combining your professionalism and your friendliness. I thought your tie back to your current job and remembering his comment on how good the burgers are there was a great personable thing to include. Great job again with this post!

  • Emily

    Hi! This is an interesting idea for a blog! This a very useful post and I hope it helps other students transitioning out of college.

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