Congratulations! You got the interview! Now what? Internship interviews are a little different than job interviews. In a job interview the employer is more concerned about finding out if you have the necessary qualifications and experience. However, typically, internships provide students with opportunities to gain the skills and experiences that employers are looking for in their professional career opportunities.
Recently, I had a couple of internship interviews. Some of the questions I was asked were:
- Would you please tell me about yourself?
- Would you please identify one of your strengths?
- What do you consider to be one of your weaknesses?
- What kind of classes are you taking/have you taken?
- What types of activities are you involved in?
The last two questions are more common in internship interviews as oppose to job interviews. Usually, an interviewer will ask about the classes you have taken in order to help determine what type of theoretical knowledge and skills you will bring to the internship. When the employer asks about what other activities you are involved in this will help give them more information about who you are, what types of things interest you, your work ethic, and potentially your availability. When employers make their hiring decisions, they want to choose the candidate with the best fit. Typically, this is a combination of skills, personality and availability.
Another question an interviewer might ask is, “How long do you plan to be working here?” At first this may seem odd since this is an internship and internships typically have start and end dates. However, this can be a tricky question because some employers like to hire interns for a short period of time and if the intern works out well, they often will ask the intern to gain more skills and experience by lengthening their internship time. If the employer is not clear about a set timeframe and they ask you this question, let them employer know the minimum amount of hours you are looking for and if this works out for both the employer and you that you would be open to increasing your hours or length of time in the internship.
The most common internship specific question that I was asked was, “What would you like to gain from this internship?” For me, the answer was easy. I wanted to get on-the-job experience and a better idea of what it would be like to work in that career field. This answer seemed to both please and impress the interviewers. Employers want to know that you are genuinely interested in the position, as opposed to just completing the internship because it is a graduation requirement. The main thing to remember in an interview is to be confident, be honest, and be yourself!
This post was written by Candace Damato. Candace is a sophomore at Carroll University who is a double major in Graphic Communications and Business-Marketing.
She has an obsession with glitter and loves scrapbooking and coloring.