Blog right triangle Preparing for Your Interview
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Preparing for Your Interview

The selection process for apprentices will include a review of your documents (resume, cover letter, application, etc.) and either a video or face-to-face interview. This process will be fair and equal to all students who apply. It cannot discriminate based on sex, race, color, national origin, religion, disability, or sexual orientation and must comply with the Equal Employment Opportunity Act and Americans with Disabilities Act.

This may be your first interview, so it is natural to feel nervous or uncertain. Preparing for your interview will empower you with knowledge and information to do your very best and confidently interact with the business. Most information you need can be found on the internet. Google search the company. Go to their website and read everything.

  • What product or service do they offer?
  • What other kinds of jobs are at the company?
  • What is the history of the company?
  • If they have a “news” or “press” section, read that also.

Another great way to prepare for your interview is to research the person / people who will interview you. You can read about their professional background and about their current job on LinkedIn.

While you may not have work experience yet, you have other experiences that are relative. Tell stories from your life, school activities or community involvement. Highlight your successes working on a team, completing a difficult assignment, working toward a project deadline, or even dealing with a difficult sibling. Business leaders will be looking for “STAR” answers to interview questions:

  • Situation / Task
  • Action
  • Result

Be specific but also brief. Rambling answers can go off track and you may lose the person’s attention. When you follow the STAR model, you will stay on task and give evidence that provides a clear picture of who you are and why the business leader should select you for the apprenticeship.

If your interview is face-to-face, always bring copies of your documents. This shows you are prepared.

Sample Interview Questions

Practice interviewing with a parent or friend. When you are comfortable with your answers and stories, your confidence will grow.

  1. Tell me about a class you have taken that is relevant to the work you will do here…
  2. If you could learn about anything, what topic would you want to learn about and why?
  3. Can you walk me through a team project you have worked on?
  4. When was the last time you were late? What happened?
  5. Can you describe a time you had to work through a challenging situation? What did you do and how did you feel?
  6. When have you felt very angry or disappointed yet dealt with the situation in a mature and successful manner?
  7. When have you wanted something and had to work hard for it?
  8. If you had more time in your schedule, what would you like to do more of?
  9. Think about a change you went through recently either at home or school. How did you adapt?
  10. When you have a big project due, how do you plan and organize?
  11. Tell me about a goal you set for yourself and accomplished.
  12. Describe a time you have felt really proud…
  13. Think of a time you felt someone was being treated unfairly. What did you do?
  14. Think about how you speak, write and listen. Which of those is your bigger strength and why?
  15. You will have the opportunity to work with many different types of people. What do you think you will learn by working with people of different races, religions, ages, etc.?

*If you have been in trouble where the police were involved, be honest. Talk specifically about what you learned from that experience and the support mechanisms you have built to ensure you stay out of trouble in the future.

Things to Remember

  • Language – It is very common to use filler words such as “like”, “you know”, “right”, etc. Try to avoid this pattern and focus on the experiences and information you want to share. To help you be more aware, ask your parents and friends “call you on it” every time you use these phrases. Take your time. It is okay to ask, “May I have a moment to think about that question?”
  • Body Language – Due to nerves or general lack of interviewing experience, you may not be comfortable maintaining eye contact. You might unconsciously fidget, bounce a knee, click a pen, or other physical indicators of nerves. Practicing your interview and professional behavior will help build your confidence and reduce this.

Follow Up

Just as you would for an in-person interview, be sure to follow up with the interviewer within 24 hours. Use this note to thank them for their time, reiterate your interest in the role or share any information you left out during the interview.

Also, if you did make a connection in the interview, maybe mention that in your note. This will be even more helpful in staying on the top of their mind when they make their hiring decisions.