As the leaves change color and pumpkins start adorning doorsteps, college interview dates begin filling our calendars. I often find that students feel anxious before college interviews, but they always go smoother than anticipated. The college interview is an opportunity for students to learn more about a college of interest, and students should not see it as a make or break moment in their application process. Here are 5 tips to help you enjoy a successful interview:

1) Relax — The college interview is important, but it has less influence on your application process than you probably think. Get ready for a relaxed conversation where you get to talk about yourself, your interests, and most of all, why a specific college is on your radar.

2) Dress to impress — Jeans, sneakers, and flip flops should not make an appearance at college interviews. It’s important to dress nicely and make a good impression.

3) Do your homework —Preparing for a college interview is important. Review possible questions that you may be asked and consider practicing in a mock interview with a parent, guidance counselor, or with an independent college counselor.

4) Get to know the college — In addition to being ready to answer questions about your favorite classes and extracurricular activities, students should expect to discuss in detail why they want to attend the college. Before arriving at the interview, students should think about how they would benefit academically and personally from attending the school, as well as how they could best contribute to the campus community.

5) Write a thank you note — Try to write a handwritten thank you note to your interviewer within 3-5 days of the interview. A few kind words of appreciation go a long way with most things in life, college interviews included.

Good luck with your college interview, have fun, and feel free to contact P&A if we can help! Please also check out the P&A October newsletter for more college admissions news.


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